Many thought leaders were invited to present their insights at this year’s SMX West 2014, which was held from March 11th to the 13th at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center. During one of the sessions, Google’s Matt Cutts stated that he “wouldn’t be surprised” if mobile queries exceeded desktop queries by the end of this year. Cutts gave similar insights into the rise of mobile internet usage at last year’s SMX West.
“Look at your Google Analytics to see mobile visits versus desktop—I am guessing you’ll see the start of an exponential curve,” stated Cutts during a panel discussion for “What’s Needed For SEO Success In 2013 & Beyond?” at last year’s SMX West.
Indeed, smartphone and tablet usage is rapidly increasing, while the traditional PC market of notebooks and desktop computers is gradually declining. According to eMarketer, global mobile phone users are expected to reach 4.55 billion this year, with 1.75 billion of these users being smartphone users. The growing adoption of mobile devices in the developing world is aiding much of this astonishing growth.
Mobile internet usage is predicted to overtake desktop internet usage in 2014. eMarketer estimates that the total number of mobile phone internet users will rise 16.5% in 2014, and will maintain double-digit growth until 2016. “If you haven’t thought about what your site looks like on mobile you better start. Also, site speed—making your site fast is good for users, and it gives an SEO edge,” stated Cutts in last year’s discussion panel, which included Duane Forrester of Bing, and SEO experts Rae Hoffman and Janet Driscoll Miller.
Increasing mobile adoption and mobile internet usage will require a paradigm shift in the online marketing strategies of marketing professionals and businesses. To capture such a large audience, business owners will need to implement responsive web design to ensure that their websites are optimized for mobile and tablet users. Responsive web design enables the layout and content of websites to seamlessly adapt to the screen sizes of various devices—whether it’s a 13-inch laptop or a smartphone.
Google—which is the most popular search engine in the United States and commands more than half of its search market share—recommends responsive web design as the industry best practice. It’s not hard to see why: responsive websites have one URL and the same HTML regardless of the device. This makes it easier for Google to crawl, index, and organize content. In contrast, separate mobile sites that have URLs and HTML that differ from its desktop counterpart will require Google to crawl and index multiple versions of the same website.
Investing in responsive web design is essentially about investing in usability, as it enables one website to provide a great user experience across many devices and different screen sizes without requiring online marketing professionals to manage separate online marketing campaigns for the desktop and mobile websites.
How will the foreseen dominance of mobile queries impact your web design, SEO, and other online marketing strategies? How will you adapt?
- Class A Source/Hyperlink: http://searchmarketingexpo.com/west/
- Class B Source/Hyperlink: http://searchengineland.com/matt-cutts-mobile-queries-may-surpass-pc-year-186816
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