You have probably seen or heard the term “mobilegeddon” around during the last few days; as with most news surrounding Google, it has caused a big splash. And this time you definitely need to know about it.
If you’re unsure what mobilegeddon might mean for you as a legal marketer and whether there’s anything you need to do about it, I’ve put together this quick guide to help you out.
What is mobilegeddon and who does it affect?
It’s an update to Google’s search algorithm which penalises websites that are not mobile friendly. It was rolled out on 21 April 2015.
What will it mean for firms that don’t have mobile friendly websites already?
Mobile friendliness has been a ranking factor for a couple of years now, but this update gives it much more importance. Websites that aren’t mobile friendly will drop down the search results, whilst mobile friendly sites will be rewarded with improved rankings.
What can you do about it?
In order to avoid being penalised by Google, you must provide a mobile friendly version of your website to visitors. There are three ways to do this:
1. Make your existing website mobile responsive using CSS. This is the recommended method.
2. Create a website that serves different HTML and CSS content to specific devices. This method is acceptable but it’s much trickier to maintain than responsive sites.
3. Build a mobile specific website with a different URL such as m.xyzwebsite.com. This is the least desirable option because webmasters are left to manage two separate websites, instead of one.
Why is SEO important in general to law firms?
The legal industry was initially very sceptical of the value SEO could add to their marketing efforts. Over time, more law firms added this channel to their marketing mixes and realised just how effective it was in generating new business. With recent studies showing that 93% of online experiences starting with a search engine and around 71% of searches resulting in a page one organic click, it’s clear that SEO should be a priority for every law firm.
If your website isn’t SEO friendly, you’re missing a huge opportunity; one that your competitors will capitalise on.
Law firms have content that they don’t want to appear in search engines. How can you overcome this?
This is a very common problem, and one that is easily resolved.
All good content management and publishing platforms provide the option to exclude certain pieces of information from search results. This usually involves clicking a checkbox to ‘disallow’ certain content from search results. It really is as simple as that!
How can mobile friendly content tie in to a successful SEO strategy?
It’s no secret that the number of global mobile users overtook the number of desktop users last year, so there’s no doubt about the importance of mobile-responsive content. Since Google’s latest algorithm update, all successful SEO strategies must incorporate mobile friendly content.
This starts from the layout and appearance of websites on mobile devices. On page elements should fit nicely on mobile screens, text should be legible and buttons should be easily clickable, amongst other things. These are just some of the things involved in Google’s mobile friendliness tests.
Many content publishing platforms are aware of this, so they provide tools to customise how content appears on different devices. By using such tools, webmasters can build a foundation for a good mobile experience thus improving their chances of a performing better in search engine results.