Mobile phones are seeing unprecedented penetration in the US consumer market, with a 96% penetration rate, which spells great opportunities for mobile SEO. While that number doesn’t mean that 96% of Americans own a mobile phone (some people have more than one), it still speaks to a wide acceptance of mobile phones by the American consumer.
Mobile phones have become so much more than the flip phone that would let users take blurry pictures. They have become smartphones – mini computers used to send text messages and tweets, surf the web, visiting social networks, send email, take photos and movies, download or stream music, use a GPS, and if you have time, call your friends.
Mobile phones are being used for mobile browsing such as using a mobile search engine or restaurant review site to find a nearby restaurant, or a shopping site to find the closest store that has the shoes you’re looking for. They’re also checking out your mobile-optimized pages to find out more information about your business. In fact, research by Ed Hewett of Omniture suggests that mobile-optimized experiences “have an average 75% higher rate of engagements per visit for mobile users.”
This means that mobile phones are important enough that it’s still necessary to follow mobile SEO practices whenever possible. For example, using mobile keywords are still very important, since many of your mobile users will come to a website using different search terms on their smartphone than they would using a regular desktop search. According to Bryson Meunier, mobile keywords can be responsible for as much as 16% of total search traffic to your website, and even as high as 29.9% for certain companies working in specific industries.
The most commonly searched mobile pages usually contain content about pricing, directions, menus, and company information. Mobile conversion strategists, especially for retail stores and restaurants, will focus most heavily on those pages, making sure they are fully optimized for mobile use and encompass all aspects of a solid SEO campaign: content, links, architecture, social, and of course, strategy.
Photo courtesy of THINKMULE_junkdrawer_2.