You don’t have to be a search engine geek to manage your search engine marketing team or SEO vendors. The same tools SEO companies use to optimize your site can be used to manage them.
Search engine optimization is complicated; there are a lot of minor factors involved. As a manager, you just don’t have time to deal with every little factor. That is why you hired a search engine optimization team in the first place. But you do need to check up on them. Every other aspect of marketing needs a manager who can check the quality of the work as it’s in progress. SEO is no different.
Here is a great infographic showing some of the major factors of SEO. It will help you know what you should be checking up on. It doesn’t represent all of the factors involved in managing search engine marketing, but it does a good job of representing the core factors of SEO. If you are not getting these factors right, everything else you do with SEO will suffer.
In this post, I will show you how to check mobile readiness. These tools will give you a clear picture of where you stand. You can share the results with your SEO team, with the expectation that they can improve on your findings.
Google has made mobile readiness a major factor in its algorithm. Google recognizes if a user is on a mobile device, and splits its results into desktop traffic and mobile traffic. If the person is on a mobile device, Google will consider how mobile-ready your content is versus other competing content. The mobile-ready page has a better chance of being displayed.
It’s important to consider why Google is doing this. Google knows mobile users have different needs than a desktop user. For example, mobile users have to use their finger to click. So if your call to action uses small text, you are preventing the mobile user from taking action.
We should look at the difference between mobile-ready and mobile-optimized.
Mobile readiness is when your website is built so search engines recognize it as mobile-friendly. It renders favorably on a mobile device in the way that the bots expect it to. When evaluating your site, search engines are deciding if:
- Your website displays quickly for mobile devices
- Users can read it – e.g., the text is large enough to read
- The site is “responsive,” so it changes how it displays on differently sized screens
- Users can easily navigate it
Don’t confuse mobile readiness with mobile optimization. Mobile readiness is only half of the story. It’s important to meet the mobile expectations of search bots, but its also important to meet the search expectations of customers.
Mobile optimization is process of meeting both the expectations of search bots and customers.
Mobile optimization is process of meeting both search bots and customer expectations.
Here’s how to check your mobile readiness. Feel free to call our hotline if you want to know more about meeting both customer and search bot expectations.
Mobile readiness test Instructions:
- First step is really easy. Go to Google’s mobile friendly testing page and type in your URL as www.yourdomain.com.
- Run the test. You will either pass, or you will fail for one of two reasons: 1) Google failed to crawl your site or 2) your site failed the mobile readiness test.
If Google failed to crawl your site, it could be anything from a simple “robot.txt” issue (a command telling Google not to crawl your site, which can be turned “on” or “off”), or something bigger. If you get this result, we suggest you ask your SEO team to report to you why this happened. Either way at least now you know Google is having trouble crawling your site. If Google is having a problem crawling your site, chances are Google is not ranking you very well.
If your site failed the test, you will have the advantage of Google’s advice. Google gives you suggestions about what you need to fix. Google wants you to do well, because Google wants to provide the best content to its customers. In the example below, Google thinks the text is too small, links are too close together, and mobile viewport is not set.
If you failed the test, it’s really important you correct the stated issues so Google will consider you valuable enough to share with mobile users. A statement we hear all the time is, “We are mobile friendly—I don’t understand why we failed.” What Google and other search engines think about your mobile readiness will impact your results. So it’s important to pass Google’s test of mobile readiness.
Solutions to failed mobile readiness tests:
- If you have an existing web development team, you can share the test results with them and ask them to fix the issues. Keep in mind—this should not be expensive. If you get really high quotes from your web team, give us a call on our free helpline.
- Some search engine optimization teams will fix these errors. Share the results with your SEO team and ask them if they will resolve the issues. Again, this should not be expensive. If you get really high quotes from your web team, once again give us a call.
I hope this post helped you manage a core factor of your search engine marketing. Search is complicated, which is why we are dedicated to demystifying search engine marketing for managers. We offer a free helpline. You can ask us any question you have about SEO.