Google’s “mobile-friendly” tagging has arrived. What it means for nonpofits.

10 Dec

Last year, Google unveiled their mobile bot. What’s that you say? A new device to harvest data from your mobile phone? A new wearable device to make you use Google even more than you do today?

Nope. It’s their software program that crawls the web looking at the primary domains for all websites (think http://www.yournonprofitnamehere.com) and its purpose is to see what kind of experience you offer mobile visitors to your primary domain.

Here’s a screen grab off my iPhone showing our customer Ronald McDonald House of Kansas City as I searched for them. (RMHCKC redirects mobile visitors to their primary domain to their RAZ Mobile website. This is a best practice for many reasons, the Google mobile bot and gaining the “mobile-friendly” tag chief among them as well as giving in seconds on any screen.)

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See the mobile-friendly label? It appears in search results for all our customer sites since what offer satisfies the Google mobile bot’s parameters for what a good mobile experience is solely in the eyes of Google.

This shows that “mobile-friendly” tagging in Google search results has arrived. (Side note: I really don’t like the term “mobile-friendly” since I have see many implementations wherein my first action on the site I’m on is to start pinching and swiping to figure out what’s on the page. I strongly prefer “mobile-optimized”.) On it’s face it the term suggests a good mobile experience and not a PC experience that likely will frustrate the visitor perhaps to the point of not returning.

But what lies deeper and what lies ahead should concern all nonprofits.

What lies deeper than this label is how frictionless is your mobile giving experience? As Blackbaud reminds all nonprofits, visitors to your website go there to give more than to stay connected with your nonprofit by a 2 to 1 margin. If that’s the case then the “mobile-friendly” label is great but it gives no heads up to the donor about how easy you make giving.

For our customers frictionless giving is at the heart of what we deliver on all three screens. Giving in seconds is what we offer RAZ Mobile customers and their donors.

What lies ahead is what I fear almost more than a poor giving experience and that is never being seen in search results. Well, technically you will show up in the search results but where in the search results is the big question. Above the fold? On the second page?

You see there are many that expect Google to use the mobile bot to determine the “mobile-friendly” status of your primary domain and then begin demoting domains that are not mobile-friendly.

No one, no matter what you’re doing on the web, should risk search rank demotion. With 9 out of 10 mobile searches leading to action within an hour, being found above the fold and on the first page is always the goal in Google search results.

So the “mobile-friendly” tag is here and it’s here to stay. The ramifications for nonprofits could be very impactful. Get a great mobile website and frictionless giving today (it’s what we do!) and enjoy the benefits tomorrow and the next day and the next day and……

Dale Knoop is part of a great team working to make RAZ Mobile a great platform for any cause engaged in fundraising. Any cause can create an content-rich mobile presence, share it through text messages, social media, QR codes, advertising and more and best of all-quickly and securely process donations from motivated supporters. Dale holds multiple patents and applications for patent in the mobile space including advertising, content optimization, geo-targeting, negative QOS and a mnemonic device QR code alternative.

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