Google’s algorithm is constantly changing, however, one of the things that it always uses as a metric is the overall UX. Sure, it may be impossible for a virtual intelligence to differentiate a good website from a bad one after all, good and bad are subjective, but there are more than a couple of reliable criterions based on which it can pass its judgment. As it happens, website responsiveness affects more than a couple of these metrics. With this in mind and without further ado, here are five benefits of responsive web design for your overall SEO efforts.
1. Duration of visit
When it comes to deep-learning, it is quite hard for an algorithm, even a sophisticated one, to understand the reasons behind certain actions of your visitors. All they can see are the symptoms, which will make them assume a diagnosis of a problem. For instance, if a person enters your website only to leave a couple of seconds later, the algorithm will assume that your website is A) of a low quality of B) not what it promised it was (click-bait or some other black hat technique). Overall, both of these will result in the drop of your website’s rank.
Now, one statistic claims that it takes about 4 seconds of non-responsiveness for a website to lose about a quarter of its visitors. On the internet, there is a general consensus that your website should load within the first two seconds, while there are those who claim that even waiting the full two seconds is pushing it. In this way, having a highly-responsive website directly affects the duration of the visit to your website.
2. Encouraging website interactions
In the previous section, we mentioned that the duration of a visit is important. Increasing immersion through interactive elements is a trend that is taking the world of digital marketing by storm, however, it has its dark side as well. One of the reasons why micro-interactions like likes and ratings are so popular, is because they don’t require a page reload. In a situation where your page is slow to load, this becomes an even greater factor.
On the other hand, sometimes micro-interactions simply don’t cut it. Therefore, greater responsiveness encourages your visitors to actually interact with your website. In turn, this increases the engagement of customers with your brand, making a strong emotional connection that might make them come back. Furthermore, it encourages a longer visit duration which, once again, directly improves your SEO rank.
3. Your website is the first and the last line of defense
In a traditional business interaction, people would judge the prowess of your team according to your headquarters, your store or your representatives. In the digital world, however, all they have to base their opinion of you on are the reviews and your website. If your website is slow, constantly crashing or poorly optimised for different devices, this might reflect poorly on your entire brand.
Once you ensure that your website is fast and professional-looking enough, you can feel free to engage in digital marketing aspects like content marketing or look for someone who offers link building services. Still, for any of this to work, you need to make sure that your website is up to the task.
4. Easier to focus
One of the most popular ways to make your website’s design responsive is to make it minimalist. Needless to say, going with minimalist design creates other SEO perks on its own. For instance, having a single call-to-action (CTA) button can significantly boost your conversion rate. Moreover, leaving less clickable elements on the homepage makes the navigation more intuitive. This, apart from being user-friendly, is also a crawler-friendly practice, which could make your website indexed much sooner.
5. Less duplicate content
Finally, if Google hates one thing it’s duplicate content and having a responsive website allows you to avoid this in a simple and elegant way. You see, if your website doesn’t perform well on both mobile and desktop, you would be forced to create two different versions of your website.
Of course, Google understands the need for this and won’t directly penalise such efforts but it doesn’t look kindly on them either. With this in mind, it is more than clear that making a website that is responsive to all types of devices might be the best solution to your problem.
At the end of the day, the speed of your website is vital for the first impression that your website makes, which means it is bound to create some return visitors, as well. Needless to say, return visitors are just a couple of steps away from becoming paying customers. Keep in mind that the way in which your website works when your audience first enters it is a sample of what your business performance is like. With this in mind, it deserves your full and undivided attention.
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