I don’t need a Delorean to know the future is mobile. That is not to say that I don’t WANT a Delorean, but not for the purpose of time travels with Dr. Emmett. It’s because the future of mobile is NOW (oxymoron, who cares). All the signs point to it. You can barely sit through dinner without checking your phone for new Tweets or texts. If you should enter into a heated debate over what year the DeLorean Motor Company founder was busted for attempting to smuggle $24 million worth of cocaine into the U.S. (yes, this actually happened), just Google the answer on your smartphone. Mobile technology has the answer you’re looking for AND MORE, plus it is almost always right at your fingertips. Even my ten-year-old cousin has a cell phone, and I know two-year-olds that can maneuver around an iPad better than me.
Recently, Google’s Yoshikiyo Kato and Pierre Far released a statement saying this:
To improve the search experience for smartphone users and address their pain points, we plan to roll out several ranking changes in the near future that address sites that are misconfigured for smartphone users.
What does that mean? Basically, if your mobile site has issues, you will not rank highly in search results, and that’s that. This just goes to show how important it is for your mobile website to be created and formatted correctly. As mobile search continues to grow, desktop and mobile optimization will be 50/50, and who knows, desktops as we know it could become endangered species.
To help webmasters fight falling mobile rankings, Google highlighted a few common mistakes they tend to see in mobile sites.
- Unplayable videos
- They suggest using HTML5 standard tags and avoid formats like Flash.
- Faulty redirects
- Smartphone-only 404s
- If your content isn’t available in a mobile-friendly format, serve the desktop page, not a 404.
- Page speed
Below are a few images that I think best show the change and growth of mobile with two clients of ours whose site traffic back up this theory.
(graphs via http://www.slideshare.net/bge20/2013-05-bea)
Need further proof that the future is mobile? Check out the search data from one of our automotive clients:
And this isn’t just an industry phenomenon. We have also witnessed a rise of mobile searches for one of our retail e-commerce clients: