There’s been a lot of fuss and flurry about making sure your real estate website is mobile friendly. Although the process with your site here has been fairly seamless there’s still some confusion about the benefits you’ll receive as a result of this transition.
You’ll hear several terms used, like mobile friendly, mobile first, mobile compatible, responsive. Although each term has a slightly different meaning from a strictly technical point of view, it all boils down to your website being automatically scaled so it displays properly on devices like cell phones and tablets. In most cases that means scaled down because most sites are still designed on desktop computers.
In many cases it means the scaling is smart enough to handle the different dimensions of phones and tablets. You don’t have to figure it out, which is a good thing, believe me.
Google defines ‘mobile friendly’ this way (found at: https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/6101188?hl=en):
- A defined viewing area (or viewport) that adjusts to the device’s screen size.
- Content that flows in the viewport, so that users don’t have to scroll horizontally or pinch the screen in order to see the entire page.
- Fonts that scale for easier reading on small screens.
- Easy-to-touch elements (e.g., buttons) that are well-spaced from other touch elements.
- Visual design and motion driven by mobile-friendly technology.
While you don’t have to understand all the details, this does give you an overview of how your site should respond. If it isn’t working that way it may be time to contact tech support.
You should test your site from time-to-time. Use your phone and your tablet then see if you can’t find at least a phone that has a slightly different display. Better yet, use this link – https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/ – to see how Google sees your site.
Why Google gets to say
Much of the recent talk about making websites mobile friendly is because Google decided to change how it ranked sites, partially based on how mobile friendly they are. Since, according to ExpandedRamblings Google is responsible for a bit more than 75 percent of the US search market and 81 percent + of the US Mobile search market it’s obvious every webmaster, you included, wants to keep them happy. (Yes, you can find numbers that indicate Google handles more and fewer searches, but they are the 1,000 pound gorilla in the web search game.)
Why you need to be mobile friendly
Other than search engine ranking, which is important, the biggest reason is because that’s where people are looking – for restaurants, stores, theme parks, hair dressers, and, real estate agents.
And, as DynamicsOnline points out, folks are already looking at your site on their phones and tablets. Really. More than you might imagine, and more every day. You want them to be able to use your site the way they want to.
Every now and again there’s a major change. It wasn’t all that long ago that the World Wide Web was brand new. The switch to mobile friendly sites simply means more people can find you and view the information you have for them than ever before.
Feel free to ask questions about mobile friendly sites – we’ll get an answer for you.