Mobile SEO, search engines and directories for the mobile web

30 04 2009

In our effort to get our  Mobislim mobile site ranking and SEO optimized, I found this blog post “The place to be: mobile search engines and portals where you should register your site” at mobithinking.com, which is just exactly what we needed for our mobile site mobislim.com.  Thank you mobithinking for sharing this with all of us! This is great information and I thought I would help to spread the word.

Not all the big operators and content sites uses Yahoo!, Google  and Microsoft as default search , so they advise you to register with white-label providers such as Medio or Jumptap. Here is a list of search engines where you should register your mobile site

  • Find.mobi: search for your site on find.mobi.
  • Yahoo oneSearch: search for your site on yahoo.mobi; and submit site here.
  • Taptu: search for your site on taptu.mobi; and submit site here.
  • Seek4Wap: search for your site on Seek4Wap; and submit site here.
  • Microsoft Live: search for your site here: live.mobi; submit site here.
  • Medio Systems: submit site here.
  • Jumptap: submit site here.
  • Google: search for your site on google.mobi; submit site map here.

For lots more mobile search providers, see wapSwap (also includes directories and portals) and the excellent WAPReview.mobi.

There are countless mobile directories and portals of varying quality and depth of content, as well as geographical and vertical focus (check which ones allow/disallow adult content for example). Most have links to submit a URL from either the home page or from a particular category. Some may request a link in return. There’s a good list of directories of mobile and PDA sites on WAPReview.mobi (including some non-English speaking ones).

Here is a handful of directories to get you started:

See this very handy list of both directories and search providers with many direct links to submit your site from UK mobile agency We Love Mobile (thanks to Simon Liss for this).

I guess Tom and his SEO squad will be quite busy these days sending our site to all these search engines and directories. I will report back on how this helped to our rankings.  We’ll use Bango Mobile  Analytics referrer information to check how much traffic the search engines and directories are sending us, and best of all which keywords people are using to get to our site.

If you have more search engines and directories that we should be mentioning please let me know so we can give something back to mobithinking.

Follow Mobislim updates on twitter  http://twitter.com/mobislim

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Mobile SEO, we want Google Mobile Search to love us a bit more…

27 04 2009

Apparently our mobile site mobislim.com wasn’t very (or not at all) SEO optimized…

Tom Thurston, our WAP master and  mobile SEO mentor, reviewed our site from an SEO point of view, and this is what he had to say:

“It’s dire. We don’t even rank for “slimming”, even though our site is all about it. (Annoyingly lots of non-mobile slimming sites come up in the mobile searches as well). I am therefore changing the Mobislim CMS to publish “SEO friendly” URLs as well as deploying a number of other SEO tactics.”

I love his determination! Check his blog to find out the technical bits about what he is talking about.

So yesterday he deployed Mobislim v2 which is now governed by the Scorch Controller, that he has created himself. This Java Spring MVC based controller framework ensures that our slimming diets and health site now benefits from SEO friendly URLs.

As an example:

Old URL for an article about a slimming product: if you read this, you wouldn’t know what that page is about…well, guess what, Google wouldn’t know either!

http://mobislim.com?p=ax5_zx2

New URL SEO friendly: just by looking at it you know is about hoodie gordonini, that is an article and that is a slimming product! Google has -at least- to like us a bit.

http://mobislim.com/k-zfve/slimming-products/article/5/hoodia-gordonini.htm

In addition to this – page titles and page meta tags are now based on the assets / articles being viewed. We are also using the heading tags when presenting article titles. The combination of the above should lead to a whole load of hot loving from Google mobile search.

We have a new site map that we have sent today to Google and now let’s see what happens in the next few weeks.

REALITY CHECK: Let’s see our rankings…

The only thing we rank for, and in the 9th position is for “slimming charts” 😦

This is what I would like to see mobilsim ranking for:

“Slimming tips” “healthy diets” “lose weight” “diets” “slimming” Very competitive terms on search, but focusing our efforts in content creation and SEO technical aspects, I think we can get there…

So here is my challenge Tom, will we or will we not be able to rank for these keywords in the next 2-3 months?

Follow our mobile SEO mission here and in twitter and learn with us how to get your site optimize!

http://twitter.com/mobislim

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New! Bango mobile analytics v4 is here! Get a 30 day FREE trial on bango.com/analytics

22 04 2009

Bango has announced today the launch of Bango Analytics v4, and this is how I see the new granularity and depth of data can help all mobile marketers:

  • Now ALL visitors get a unique user ID. This gives an accurate total for unique visitors and let you drill down to see more information about each visitor, like when the first time you saw them was, or how many times have they been to your site. Why is this useful? Well, thanks to this you can check if a landing page is successful, if your navigation works well, if your message is compelling so people keep coming back to your site or if it sucks so bad, that people only comes once and leave for ever… useful, don’t you think?
  • You can now track unique visitors whether a mobile user connects via operator gateway, WiFi or home broadband – even if users change their connection, Bango still retains the ability to track them. Now everyone who interacts with a mobile website or mobile campaign has a privacy-protected, unique user ID, no matter what type of network connection they use.  So there are no mistakes in counting where your visitors come from, and how many of them you are getting, as Bango can see if the same visitor has come one time to your site via WiFi, or via WAP.
  • New advanced filtering and sorting enables precise segmentation of mobile data, so it’s quick to get to the results needed on a case by case basis.  Select to filter any report by page, country, operator, device, time or date.  This is just heaven! I can see if my smart phone visitors are the ones really buying or downloading my content, or if they are just browsing because they have unlimited browsing plans. This feature really tells me how my users interact with my site so I can go back and talk to them in their terms. It is just perfect.
  • Unlike other analytics solutions, Bango Analytics works from your original “raw” data and the new data warehouse delivers even better performance and scalability, allowing Bango to record, enrich and report more information about your visitors. This means, among many things, that your data is always available in its fullest capacity and is enriched anytime enhancements take place.

  • Bango Analytics lets you see metrics by the hour so you can understand how a mobile marketing campaign is performing in real time and make any necessary adjustments to ensure campaign success.  Thanks God somebody gets this, why would I want to look at my campaign results once the damage has been done? If something isn’t working, do you want to let it drag around until your budget is gone and your reputation ruined? I didn’t think so…another way to look at it is, imagine your campaign is targeting a particular group but looking at the results of the campaign there is a better response from a completely different public. If you can see this as it happens, wouldn’t you be amazed at how a few tweaks can make your campaign even more successful? Think how you use Google Adwords and how important this is…

  • Bango’s device reporting now lets you view your visitor’s devices by manufacturer, model and version.  Target your site or application to the most popular. Just reminding you not to sell ice to the Eskimos  😉

  • Bango Analytics records all the parameters passed on the URL.  Many marketing tools pass important information within the URL. By recording all this information, it’s all available to you for analysis.  Aha! Let’s check where our ads are really being displayed, in case you ever had any doubts…

  • Bango Analytics delivers the top 3 WAA metrics – page views, unique visitors and visits. It couldn’t be any other way.

Watch this space to see how we use all this new functionality in real mobile marketing campaigns or have a look by yourself on our analytics center where you can see real traffic and campaigns taken place.

We have a case study coming up on South African traffic and we are getting Mobislim optimize for mobile SEO, so there is quite a lot coming up!

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iPhone: Not a top 20 handset for browsing and buying on the mobile web

1 04 2009

If you are thinking in focusing your mobile advertising just on the iPhone, keep reading!
Just in case, this is not an April Fool’s joke 🙂

According to statistics released on Monday by Bango, when it comes to the most popular phones for browsing and buying content on the mobile web worldwide, the iPhone sits outside the top 20. The Bango Top 20 handset list, based on Bango’s February statistics, puts the Nokia 3110c on top, followed by the Samsung M800 in 2nd and the Nokia 6300 in 3rd. The iPhone appears at 24th on the list.
This data represents the activities of major brands and businesses as their consumers browse to mobile websites (measured by Bango Analytics) and buy mobile content and services (as measured by Bango Payment).
The stats come from the month of February when 1.1 million unique visitors browsed to mobile websites as monitored by Bango’s Analytics service (customers include the Financial Times and MTV) and bought mobile content and services using Bango’s Payment service (customers include Thumbplay, Buongiorno, Gameloft, EA Games).
This sample size is certainly considerably larger than trials carried out by comScore and others. With global penetration of the iPhone at 1% according to Gartner, brands need to look beyond the iPhone to reach the mass market.

Let’s have a look at our site mobislim.wap.com and check the footprint that iPhones left on our Bango Analytics center:
January 0,44% of the devices that access our mobile site where iPhones, from a total of 614 devices and 25,040 page views.
February saw a 1.32% of iPhones from 313 devices and 5,738 pageviews (you can tell we didn’t run any campaigns…)
And March shows another increase with 1,41% of iPhones from 331 devices and 6,303 page views.

Check this out by yourself in our analytics center!

Putting this into context, as you probably know the iPhone browses “normal” site content but it doesn’t handle Flash, and you can’t follow links that lead to the download of content or files.   It can also be a pretty painful experience for large, complex sites – compare m.ft.com with ft.com and you get the picture.

For that reason, many sites are producing specially adapted sites for the iPhone. Look at how much better iphone.facebook.com is than facebook.com – in fact even Apple has an iPhone specific version of parts of apple.com.  So, we are seeing more and more businesses detecting the mobile Safari on their PC website and pushing them to the iPhone adapted site.
Personally, I have an iPhone and like many of my friends I think it’s really fun to use.  So what do think?  Does this make you re-appraise your mobile advertising plans?

If you want more analysis on this story read Ray Anderson’s post on blog.bango.com