How to perform a mobile SEO audit: Key criteria, validations & tools
Aleyda Solis is an International SEO Consultant, blogger and speaker. Named one of the 10 Digital Marketing specialists to follow in 2015 by Forbes & one of the 50 Online Marketing Influencers to Watch in 2016 by Business Insider, she has more than 8 years of experience in Search Engine Optimization.
We live in multi-device world, driven by cross-platform and multi-channel search with a huge potential to grow. Estimated 5 billion people will use mobile phones by 2017. At the moment, Google has no separate Mobile Web Index – they are still experimenting with it.
However, mobile optimization is a Google ranking factor, so it’s very important to be multi-device-friendly. At the moment, a huge effort from Google on integration between Web and app search is taking place.
Conduct a real mobile SEO to comply with Google’s validation for mobile, to make the most of the entire mobile search that happens now, and to grow your conversions on both web and app.
- Do you have a mobile website? Crawl your site as a mobile bot.
Ask fundamental questions:
- Are there irrelevant redirections (web to mobile and vice versa)?
- Which of your best-performing pages are not mobile-friendly (use Google search console + Google analytics)? Assess all of your pages, prioritize them and find the most important ones for conversion and visibility.
You need to comply with Google’s rules. It’s very important not to use interstitials, but app banners instead. Your mobile web speed is very important as well, as it might become a ranking factor in the future and is already very important from usability perspective.
Think beyond the bot and validate all aspects that might affect your users!
Below are listed top mobile shopping problems
- Validate your current mobile search visibility and performance:
- How can I leverage what I already have?
- How do I perform compared to my competitors?
- What’s my current mobile ranking status? (Use Sistrix, SEMrush, SearchMetrics, SEOmonitor.)
- What’s the gap of queries and pages that provide my current mobile search visibility vs. historical ones?
- How are my top mobile web ranking pages shown in mobile SERPs? (Use free RankTank mobile friendly site test SEPR tool.)
These steps allow understanding your current mobile search ranking performance and opportunities. Use SEMrush to see keywords search and users’ activity over time.
- Compare yourself with competitors and overall industry performance.
- Find queries that have the most potential in your industry’s mobile searches.
- For which queries are your competitors ranking in mobile search? Compare with your own, using SEMrush.
- For which popular mobile queries they are invisible?
- What can you expect from your mobile optimization efforts? You need to prioritize your efforts.
- App perspective
App store discoverability challenges:
- Non-friendly UI
- Consumption (number of apps is growing, number of apps used is not)
- Basic stores’ ranking factors
Steps to take:
- Align your mobile web & app strategy to maximize their potential.
- Have a mobile app landing page on your website.
- Start app indexing and get mobile web search visibility to your app.
- Test your app indexing implementation and start tracking your app search data: Which content and queries are providing visibility?
- Find content that is causing crawling issues.
- Verify how Google access to your top mobile app screens, via Google Search Console.
- Identify your industry’s top app competitors, their trends and keywords with SimilarWeb mobile app insights.
- Compare your & their ranking, rating behavior, and main traffic sources. Are they app indexing? Identify search engine keywords they’re ranking for and how this traffic translates into usage and engagement.
All of the above will bring additional mobile engagement. Don’t forget to track & monitor your mobile app & web.