Mobile search is hotter than ever, which means that local searches will be taken along for the ride. There is a lot of excitement around it and suggestions are being put forward as to how websites can dominate local and mobile search. But when you look closely, SEO strategies for mobile devices aren’t really that different from conducting a strategy to dominate traditional search.
While it is true that mobile searches are more likely to display local results than other forms of content, this trend might be exaggerated. It should be noted that a significant portion of searches on desktop computers have local intent as well. As the functionalities of mobile devices get improved, users will start using mobile internet the same way they do a traditional PC.
A significant percentage of individuals already have Blackberries, iPhones, and devices that run on Android. The increasing screen size, battery life, readability, and multimedia capacity of these smart phones are not “unique”. Instead, the mobile industry is moving forwards feature parity with the desktop. Recent research studies conducted by Doubleclick also shows that search behaviors are becoming similar.
For example, queries in both devices are similar, clicks are the same, and the click-through rate is almost identical. Even the gap in conversion rate statistics is beginning to close. These concerns are not raised to make you ignore the challenges presented by mobile SEO. Rather, it is to make you aware that your SEO strategy should not be needlessly complicated. Among the trends that are being observed today includes the following:
- More Queries – the mobile search industry is growing at an astronomical pace. A lot more searches are being conducted while people are on the go. Overall, this presents a lot of good opportunities for SEO marketers.
- Mobile Focus is a Possibility – Yelp lets you make your mobile search preference known. That is, the displayed results you’ll get will be more local than general.
- Similar SERPs – if you are searching for local information, it is now very likely to find the same set of SERP on your desktop computer (or laptop) and smart phone.
- Limited Need for an Individual Mobile Website – just recently, search specialists were saying that creating a separate mobile site will help you rank better in mobile searches. But the need for this may soon disappear because of the reasons stated above. Also, trying to create a separate site raises concerns about technical and site duplication issues.
- Draw of Apps – although it isn’t clear whether people will continue to be obsessed with smart phone apps, it is pretty obvious right now that the industry is being driven by it. Apps can be used to promote brands and products/services effectively.
- Importance of Separate Ad Strategy – unlike organic search, PPC results dramatically differ depending on the device in question. Right now, both costs per click and conversion rate are low but the latter is projected to increase.
Finally, another trend in SEO is geography. Both traditional and mobile search are giving more importance to geography in order to provide more targeted results to the searcher.