Hello all. I have been noticing a buzz lately, especially with some of our internet savvy clients about mobile optimization. In a city like London its important that you keep yourself updated with the latest innovation and technologies as you might miss out on some business just because you are slow to make a change whereas your business competitors are one step ahead.
Talking about the mobile optimization, today I will share some of the most unknown facts in the world of mobiles and how you can optimize your site to best suit your clients’ requirements.
Talking about optimization, heres my first question, what do you think, is it like making your website responsive is going to win you a 100 points by your customers?
When we talk about optimization especially optimizing a site for mobile devices there are broadly three concepts which can help your website optimized for mobile.
1. Responsive Design for the site
2. Dynamic serving for the website
3. Creating mobile Urls for the website
Using a responsive design for mobile optimization of your site involves serving the same URL for all types of devices.
It is one of the latest and most modernized techniques for mobile optimization and everyone loves it, including Google. However with all the great features there is one major concern which if not handled properly can impact the performance of your site in the long run.
I hope some of you might have guessed it by now. The page load time for a responsive website is an area of concern.
One of the issues is that your load time increases with this design. This effect is not visible if we are talking about the smaller websites but when we are talking about big sites with thousands of pages then it can be an area of concern.
Secondly if you have lots of content on the site which is served for desktop users and you have migrated to a responsive design, you might have noticed that it takes more than the expected time to load the complete site. In order to deal with these issues compression of files and content modification can be done. But this does not mean that the speed can be increased exponentially as compression too has its own limitations.
On the whole responsive design is one of the best ways to optimize your site for mobile devices but its not the only option for optimization.
The Technique of Dynamic Headers“ Talking about this technique, I would like to put forth some interesting facts.
Many people regard this as a black hat technique as you are technically creating two different Urls for the search engines. But let me put it very straight that the Dynamic Urls are as good as the Responsive ones and completely acceptable by the search engines.
The only issue with this Url is that each time a new hand held device is launched in the market you have to add its user agent in the Url in order to let your website identify that device or else your site will not work on that device. It is one of the best techniques especially if you are planning to provide two different contents to the users. Or if your site has pretty too much content in it which if changed to a responsive design can affect the speed of your site.
Creating Mobile Urls“ Well I am discussing this at last however just because the perception it has created in the optimization world, I consider it as a cherry on top of this content. So I ask you how you are going to use this technique to optimize your site for mobiles.
Bingo, you will answer that it will have a different Url and which is mobile.yourdomain.com. So my next question is, are you sure that your answer is correct? Well a straight no. Using mobile Urls does not mean that your mobile optimized site will have a Url like mobile.yourdomain.com. It can be anything depending upon your need. Lets say I want the Url that looks like yourdomain.com/secondversionofsite. And believe me it will work just fine. One of the biggest advantages of using this technique is that you have clear bifurcation of what you want to show to your mobile users and what you want to show to those who are using a desktop for instance. Things get quite cleaned up when you are using this technique. No fuzzy redirects like in responsive design so your .htacces or web.config will remain clean and light, there will be no extra http header attributes like in dynamic headers so you are not required to worry about the updations.
On the whole mobile optimization is a delicate yet complicated thread in optimizing your site and you need to have a proper technical expertise and understanding of your business before you can optimize your site. As not every day is a Sunday the same way not every mobile optimized site has to be a responsive one.