Is there any SEO disadvantage using responsive design instead of separate mobile URLs?

Search engine optimization could do a lot for your business especially when properly and efficiently used. SEO may have its perks as well as disadvantages depending on your online marketing strategies and tools you used. Responsive design is one of the most significant methods and features you may come across with in your quest to boost your web page and site through SEO. The use of responsive design is connected with separate mobile URLs (m.site) usage which is considered more traditional. Determine the disadvantages of responsive design use if there are any along with other related topics through the help of Google experts in this video.

Video Question

Google Webmasters answer the following query:

“Does using a leveraging method of responsive design result to losing SEO benefits compared to using more traditional mobile URLs (m.site)?”

Responsive design vs traditional mobile URLs

Google experts explained two ways to create a site which could cater for both regular browsers on desktops and mobile devices:

  1. Through responsive design (example: impossible.sg)
  2. Through traditional mobile URLs (example: m.impossible.sg)

Video Highlights

  • Responsive design is defined as a method creating a page that works totally fine with a desktop browser and a mobile device browser. It designs a site which when used with mobile devices would automatically rescale or resize the page among others.
  • Redirecting is another way to create a page where, depending on the mobile user that’s coming in, they will be redirected to the mobile version of your web page.
  • In general, using a responsive design would not significantly affect SEO and the SEO advantages of the page or site because by definition, the URL is basically the same.
  • Page rank for sites using responsive design is not affected because everything is handled in one URL. As for traditional mobile URLs, the page rank may be divided between the 2 different pages if its not handle well.

In order to get higher SEO ranking, you should:

  • Make sure your website is responsive (also known as mobile friendly). This should be your top priority when choosing a website design theme.
  • If you are unable to change your website to be responsive design, redirect to traditional mobile URLs works well too. However, take note of using the rel=canonical URLs.
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