As internet penetration in South Africa grows, the practice of SEO becomes more of standard requirement rather than just gaining a competitive edge. And with this, the market need for expert search engine optimisation consulting developed. Services for SEO in Cape Town have grown the fastest out of anywhere in South Africa, or Africa for that matter.
But one thing that many ordinary websites overlook about internet access in South Africa, is that the majority of the growth has been due to the emergence of smartphones and their phenomenal popularity.
Smartphones view internet pages almost exactly like PCs so the need to create a separate website for mobile devices has pretty much dropped off completely.
So fundamentally, mobile SEO factors are very similar to regular SEO. The differences lie in how people use the internet on mobile devices.
Most devices use a 3G connection so this isn’t a concern relating the speed of the connection but rather the amount of cache available on these devices.
If your website is too large to be temporarily stored on these devices’ memory while the visitor is on your site, you risk losing this market completely. Because to them, you effectively have no web presence.
Remember, smartphone penetration is high in SA but most people have entry level devices, not the higher end models.
You have to consider the frame of mind of someone browsing the internet on their phone. Their motivation has a lot more direction. Sometimes they’re just killing time but typically they’re online to either look for a specific piece of information or service. Consider where your market browses when structuring your SEO.
In Cape Town, you’ll find that social networking is the main activity on mobile internet. In such cases, you would want to start working on building a social media campaign, for social signals.
Some other factors you should consider
• Mobile search queries are 25% shorter, on average.
• Users are much less likely to explore past the first page
• People respond much more sceptically to advertising on their phones.
Mobile devices have small screens so users don’t want to sit and read volumes of content on them. Keep your content concise and to-the-point. They’re far more likely to value content such as videos, pictures or infographics. Which are difficult to index.
Adding value is a key principle to search engine optimization. A Cape Town resident looking for consumer service will likely be looking for something local. So there’s no point optimising for it if you’re in Johannesburg. Although these days, Google Local Search will geographically rank them for the user.
Your landing page can’t have the same call to action as with the desktop version. A user probably isn’t going to fill out a form over their phone. In fact, the less details you require from them the better.
Keep your phone number on all your domain’s pages so users can click-to-call. This when they select your number on the page and it phones through immediately. It can be an immensely useful tool to shorten the conversion funnel.