Is Your Website Ready For Google’s Big Mobile Update?

Usually when Google announces an update it comes with little, if any, warning at all. However, Google recently announced, "Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results." Whilst Google have been telling Webmaster’s for years to prepare for Mobile, this is the most significant mobile-related announcement they have released to date, and it’s clear that this time, Google mean business.

It’s Time For Action…

If you don’t already have a Mobile-Friendly website then you need to get the ball-rolling, and quickly. You have probably heard the terms “Responsive Site” and “Mobile Site” repeatedly across the web, so we are going to start by briefly defining what each of these mean.

Responsive Site – A Responsive Site takes a standard website and instructs it to fit the display size that it is being viewed on. This allows your website to fit precisely on any device in any resolution. An example of a Responsive Site is the Porsche website http://www.porsche.com/uk/. You can see the change in website size if you slowly drag the bottom right hand corner of your browser inward to make it smaller.

Mobile Site – This is a completely separate site that has been designed and built purely for mobile users. It may sit on a sub domain such as m.domain.com. An example of a Mobile-Specific Site is the BBC Sports website http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/. You can see the difference by bringing up the website on a mobile and desktop device and comparing the two.

Responsive vs. Mobile Sites – What Is Better? Mobile Sites:

The Pros

  • Better mobile experience for users (may lead to higher conversions)
  • Cheaper upfront costs

The Cons

  • Recurring maintenance
  • High costs for updating multiple websites
  • May need to be upgraded in future to work on new browsers
  • Issues with optimal display on different resolutions

  Responsive Site:

The Pros

  • One website works on multiple devices
  • Only needs to be updated once as only one site
  • Recommended by Google
  • Better ROI in the long term as it won’t need much maintenance to work on future browsers

The Cons

  • More expensive upfront

A Quick Note On Search Engine Optimisation…

If Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) forms a core part of your business then this must also be taken into consideration at this point. When it comes to link building and spending time optimising a site, you need to consider the fact that updating multiple sites will be far more costly and time consuming, than updating and building links to just the one Responsive Site.

In Summary The bottom line is you need to think about why you are creating the site and what functionality you need it to have. Either way, a mobile website is a MUST if you want to stay within Google’s guidelines and within the same playing field as your competitors. If you need to discuss your website in more detail please give us a call on 01392 667766, where one of the team will be more than happy to help!

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What Are AdWords Enhanced Campaigns?

If you’ve logged in to Google AdWords recently you will probably have seen a message suggesting that you upgrade to Enhanced Campaigns. Although Enhanced Campaigns are optional at this point Google is going to automatically upgrade Campaigns which have not been manually upgraded on Monday the 22nd of July. If you make use of Google’s PPC Advertising you need to decide if you want to upgrade yourself or leave it to Google and you need to know what makes Enhanced Campaigns different.

What is an Enhanced Campaign?

1) An Enhanced Campaign gives you the ability to adjust bids based on Location, Device (Desktop, mobile or Tablet) and Time of Day. These settings were previously available but not without setting up a new Campaign.

Adwords Enhanced Campaigns Settings

Some instances where this might be beneficial:

You might want to bid more for people who are within a mile of your shop (who are more likely to visit), are using an iPhone (who will buy anything) or are browsing in the daytime on a desktop (If you are selling to businesses).

2) You also have the ability to serve different Ads based on Location, Device and Time of Day.

Some instances where this might be beneficial:

Serving an Ad with a phone number to people near your restaurant. Using different Ad copy at different times of day: “call us now” between 9:00-5:30 or “find out more online” in the evening.

What Do You Need to Do?

You need to upgrade your Campaigns manually otherwise they will be automatically upgraded with default settings. Click on the pop up in AdWords to visit the Upgrade Centre.

1) Mobile Bid Adjustment

You will be asked to set your mobile bid adjustment – you can leave this as the same as Desktop, choose a percentage change or let Google decide:

Adwords-enhanced-campaigns-mobile-bid-adjustment

 

If your Campaign was previously only targeting Desktop and Tablet users then you will need to set mobile bid adjustment to -100% to prevent your Ad from showing up in mobile search. If you are automatically upgraded your settings will be based on what other advertisers are choosing.

2) Merging Campaigns

If you currently have mobile and desktop Campaigns which appear to be similar you will be offered the opportunity to merge these into one Campaign.

Benefits and Risks of Enhanced Campaigns

Some advertisers are concerned that being forced to combine mobile and desktop will give them less granular control over their Campaigns. One thing which is certain is that a pro-active approach and manually upgrading are the best ways to ensure that you minimise risk.

There are lots of potential benefits to using Enhanced Campaigns particularly for those who don’t have a great deal of time to create new Campaigns and test out alternative settings. Once you have upgraded you can experiment with different factors and work out what will work best for you. This post by Google contains some interesting Case Studies from organisations who have seen improvements in ROI since upgrading.

If you want to know more about the potential risks and benefits of using Enhanced Campaigns then get in touch with our Digital Marketing team.


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