In the last few weeks, we have been focusing a lot on ensuring that everything you publish is mobile friendly. Whether you’re thinking about white papers, financial information, travel brochures, educational handbooks or technical data sheets in your content marketing mix, mobile is the way to go. The stats clearly show that people who use mobile devices want mobile friendly content – and that includes mobile friendly blogs.
An Unbounce article highlights the reasons for making your blog the center of your content marketing efforts. That’s because:
- It’s a web space that you control and therefore you are not subject to the rules of the social media sites.
- Blogs are great for search engine optimization (SEO) efforts.
- Blogs help with claiming authorship of your work which has been a big focus of recent Google search algorithm updates.
- As an online home for your content publishing efforts, blogs boost your authority.
But you won’t get the benefits of having a blog unless they’re mobile friendly blogs.
We’re willing to bet that a lot of your blog readers subscribe to email updates, because email remains a popular way to consume content. With more than half of all email now opened on mobile devices, it’s another excellent reason to optimize your blog for mobile devices. Customers who can’t access your blog on their mobile devices will soon become disaffected and disgruntled. You can’t afford to let that happen.
Try this experiment. Dig into your analytics data and see how many people using smart phones and tablets to access your site. Run a quick comparison with the same time last year. We can almost guarantee that you will see an increase the number of people reading your content on mobile devices. You can even dig down into the report and see which specific devices people are using.
This is a key time to optimize your blog, and here’s a good first step. If you have a smart phone or tablet, check out your blog to see how it looks and – even more important – how it performs, or use some online mobile content testing tools. Ask yourself:
- Is my branding clear?
- Can I see the content of the articles?
- Are the images quick to load?
- Is the site as a whole quick to load?
- Can I navigate and search easily?
- Does the site work well?
- Is my content readable?
Don’t be surprised if you identify some problems. An article on Social Media Examiner highlighted a couple of issues that your blog could face if it’s not correctly optimized for mobile. These include:
- slow page load times
- images that are too large
- content that is too small
- the need to scroll in order to view content.
Together, these don’t add up to a pleasant user experience. Mobile devices users will go elsewhere. If your blog experiences any of the issues listed above, then you need to fix it – fast!
What should you do about it? There are a few options.
Some people choose to have a separate mobile version of their blog. We don’t recommend this, and neither does Google. This option could damage your search ranking and dilute your online brand, because you will be sending readers to two different locations.
Others use a mobile optimized theme from a third party provider, another option that Google recommends you avoid. Often, these themes look identical. You could visit 10 sites and they would all look the same, which means your branding isn’t consistent – a no-no for successful marketing.
By far the best option – and the one that Google recommends – is to have a responsive, mobile adapted design for your blog. This means that you gain SEO benefits because you have a single URL for all users to share and comment on and for search engine spiders to crawl. It cuts down on the technical management of your website, keeps online resource usage low, and ensures that – with just a little bit of coding – images look appropriate for the devices used.
Integrate this with a digital publishing platform for your blog which ensures that all your content looks great, loads quickly, responds to each device and gives you the advantages of in-depth analytics for each piece of content published and you are onto a winner.
The mobile market isn’t going anywhere. The mobile web has been adopted even faster than the original web and the number of devices is set to keep on growing. Your business needs to take advantage of this with a mobile content strategy and mobile tools for publishing your blog so you won’t be left behind.