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SEO and mobile devices
By Dani Wilbert
Google’s recent update which is jokingly called “Mobilegeddon” clearly shows where the online website market is heading. This update is expected to give priority to mobile friendly websites over those that are not. According to our company (Amrocket) traffic statistics, has 13% traffic from mobile devices.
It might not seem like much, but that 13% might be composed of clients who can make or break your business. If you website does not look good enough on a mobile device it will not attract new leads, and according to Google, after the “Mobilegeddon” update will lower your search engine ranking.
This raises a lot of questions: what is a mobile friendly website? How can you tell if your website is mobile friendly and if it is not and how can you make it mobile friendly?
So what is a mobile friendly website? Well if you want to qualify using the Google tool provided above, all you need to do is to make sure that the website pages are easily read and accessed with a mobile tool. But if we look at it from a technical perspective, all the aspects of the website (navigation, header, content and etc) should be “responsive” to the size or the type of the device and change when a different device is used. So in theory, the structure of the website should change depending on the width of your device that you access the website with.
But Google did not leave you completely “hanging there.” It offered a tool to check if your website is mobile friendly, or at least if Google thinks so. In order for the website to qualify as mobile friendly, all the pages on it should be mobile friendly. The main idea behind this to make all the pages clear when accessed with a mobile device.
For example, let’s say, iPhone 6’s width is 375px and the width of my laptop screen is 1600px. When the website is accessed from my laptop, it recognizes the width of the screen as 1600px from the headers of the browser and looks accordingly. Same goes for IPhone 6, when I access the website with it, website adjusts to the width of the device. So on our website Amrocket, the mechanism that is responsible for recognizing the width is attributed to CSS and the width parameter, it is also called “screen responsive.”
There are different methods of converting to mobile version of the website; it can be achieved through server side (PHP) or through client side (CSS, HTML). There are undoubtedly other ways to achieve this goal, but we are going to focus on those two.
The main idea behind any method is to find out if the website is being accessed with a mobile device or not, and adjust accordingly. In our practice we use both methods (client side, and server side), depending on the project we are working with. For a common website, it makes sense to use client side method, where through HTML and CSS we establish the width of the device. If it is for example less than 375px, the style sheet or the CSS file will use different rules for HTML elements to reconstruct the website for the mobile device. In this situation it would appear to be an iPhone 6. With the server side method, a PHP function is used to change the style sheet or to redirect to a subdomain with a mobile version.
You can write a function that will recognize through the browser headers if this device is mobile or not and then act accordingly. This method is less flexible for our website and we base our mobile version on the first example, where we use HTML and CSS to recognize and convert to mobile version.
Google is serious about websites being mobile friendly, but so are we at Amrocket. Hopefully after reading this article, you will be able to choose one of these methods and modify your website. We strongly suggest that you get your website mobile friendly and are happy to help you with that. You can contact us and get more info at [email protected]
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