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Mobile Chrome "Make This Site Mobile": No ads for Desktop sites

     
4:45 pm on May 14, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The limiting nature of the post "subject" field hampered my title here. I hope it gets your attention.

I may live under a rock. I know that some of my sites are older and don't have a clever "mobile" version. I'm not running responsive ads either. Ultimately these "choices" are mine. I chose big ads which always have been fine with adsense for mobile.

Everyone may know this. Some may not. I did not. When people come to my site, Google Chrome browser with mobile users promps with a pop up saying "view a mobile friendly version of this website". Sounds nice right? Go ahead and click that. Then you get your website with adsense ads parsed from existence. So you are dishing out an ad free website at that point.

Wonder where the good times have gone? I would have preferred a letter saying this: If you don't go responsive, we're going to block all your adsense ads, provided the visitor clicks on our big banner that is highly intrusive. We are going to serve a non revenue generating version of your website if you don't have a mobile version of some sort.

The way I see it? If I choose to not invest in a mobile option, I'm the fool. Let the customer/visitor leave. Let them decide if my non mobile site sucks. If they don't like it because of how it looks on mobile, let them go away. However, to get in their face about a mobile version of my website that provides me ZERO chance at a click? That's back stabbing in my books.

Did I miss the memo? I live under a rock? Please don't preach to me about 2017 and mobile sites. Duh, I get that. However because I make a choice you can effectively parse out my F'ing site? Come on. That's BS.
5:40 am on May 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The real dynamic here is that desktop traffic is, and has been, declining. People just aren't buying desktop computers for home use at the same rate as they have in the past.


True statement. Or rather, the uptake in mobile (due to price) has overshadowed everything else without diminishing the desktop.

Hardware last longer due to increased manufacturing tolerances and mature tech pricing has placed many desktops below smart phones, but they aren't replacing them at the same rate.

Desktop is not dead, merely less than the surging smart phones.

Sooner or later the "smart phone" folks will wise up. :)

Meanwhile, responsive makes sense regardless. If your "really big div" is too big, have that fall back and keep the user. More work, but you can have cake and eat it, too.

However, mobile ads, as such, don't perform to the same levels as desktop. If one is experiencing 40% and finds that acceptable that's wunderbar....
6:39 am on May 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@keyplyr, this is my concern:

US
Q4 2015Q1 2016Q2 2016Q3 2016Q4 2016
Desktop4.28%3.87%3.75%3.51%4.31%
Smartphone1.20%1.29%1.27%1.11%1.50%
Tablet3.68%3.08%3.03%2.79%3.55%

http://www.smartinsights.com/ecommerce/ecommerce-analytics/ecommerce-conversion-rates/


I don't know if that will post legibly, but it shows that the conversion rate in Q4 2016 on desktop was 4.31%, tablet was 3.55%, and mobile was 1.50%.

Logically, if mobile users convert 1/3 as often as desktop, a retailer is only going to spend 1/3rd of the money on mobile that they spend on desktop.

I've been waiting for these devices to get closer to even before making the jump to making everything mobile friendly, but I don't think I have a choice anymore. I have to hope that the ads will be more from companies that don't reply on a conversion; otherwise, my RPM will have to drop.
7:03 am on May 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@csdude55 - in all due respect, you are waiting for something that won't happen.

As I have said several times in this thread, you are not converting mobile because you do not have a website that supports what mobile users need. It's as simple as that.

You will never see high mobile Adsense income until you have a mobile responsive website.

Do the research, install bootstrap and mobile detect php scripting, start writing your mobile CSS divs and develop a responsive site... or pay someone to do it.

Then when mobile users discover your site, it will look nice and they will engage. Then you can start bringing in all that mobile traffic through Social Media and mobile apps. Then you can test responsive Adsence ad units and see which sizes and styles work best.

Your desktop site will remain unchanged. But when a mobile user comes to your site, the detect script serves them the mobile version with the mobile ads.
7:24 am on May 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I think you're misunderstanding my situation, keyplyr.

My sites are mostly message boards, classifieds, and local news. My top site has a near 100% penetration locally (with about 7 million monthly pageviews), so there's just no way to get more traffic (which is why I have multiple sites; each one targeting a different local region, giving me the ability to reach new people). I still have the same number of visitors and posters that I had 3 years ago, but a significant portion has gone to mobile instead of desktop.

Currently, mobile users look at less pages per session, they post fewer ads, and they contribute less to conversations in the message boards. And when they do, obviously, they give short replies, whereas a desktop user tends to give details, cite sources, etc. And I understand that; I typed up this reply in about 3 minutes, but on a mobile it would have taken all day!

I'm currently rebuilding everything to be mobile friendly, but it's a huge gamble... I hope that the rebuild will encourage mobile users to interact more, and I hope that the Page RPM will go up. But there's just no way of knowing until I do it. Worst case scenario, current desktop users say "hey, look, now I can use my phone", they'll lean more towards using the lower-paying mobile version... and the value doesn't go up, meaning that I lose money (a loss that will grow exponentially each month).

I'm doing it anyway, but as I said, it's because I don't have much of a choice in the matter. I'm rolling the dice with my livelihood, and that's a very, very scary thing to do.
7:26 am on May 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

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And while all that seems possible, the numbers still provide a different perspective.

Mobile users don't convert WHEN THEY ARE MOBILE. Most of them, if they remember when they get home, do their biz on desktop.

OR, the other reality....

Mobile users operate on the cheap and what's close and near rather than invest and purchase. Numbers don't lie, well that's not true, statistics can tell all kinds of stories. Bank accounts, however, are pretty reliable and smart phones just don't have the same payout as other devices.
7:59 am on May 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@csdude55 - I'm using a mobile phone right now. I use mobile 90% of the time as I am on the road because of my work.

To me, it is nearly as easy to use a phone to participate here as using a large keyboard since I do it so much... but moreso because WebmasterWorld is mobile responsive.

I'm a member at several message boards and forums... all mobile responsive. I place ads, buy products, run my websites all from my phone.

Mobile Adsense conversions are on the rise, now about half of desktop since desktop is dropping off. Product sales from mobile still lags far behind desktop but that too is on the rise.

Places like Amazon and Bestbuy say they do very well with mobile so obviously it's possible if you get your site right.

There just is no reason to not make your websites mobile responsive. As I said, your desktop site will not change. It will still look like it does now... but you'll gain all that mobile which is more than desktop.

Anyway, I'm weary of this. Either you'll let go of your rationalizations why you can't change or you won't. Either way the internet will continue on its path of innovation and those who want to be a part of it will try to keep up. The rest will fade away to irrelevancy.
8:22 am on May 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I'm rolling the dice with my livelihood, and that's a very, very scary thing to do.


It may feel like the odds are against you, csdude55. I'd look at it differently based upon the known fact of mobile becoming the way people communicate. The facts are there for everyone to see, and it is an opportunity for traffic that would not otherwise have access.

When changing a site to responsive there's the risk of changes in rankings, and the potential for traffic loss. It's like starting work again to rank well for our topics. We all face that, but, really, desktop use will eventually become the minority, although it'll never disappear entirely, imho. Interestingly, some traffic indicators suggest that mobile is adding traffic opportunities. [webmasterworld.com] Google says it'll be making "our index mobile-first." [webmasterworld.com]

The indicators are all there.

Yes, it's scary.
11:53 am on May 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Worst case scenario, current desktop users say "hey, look, now I can use my phone",


Why would they say that? A good conversion to responsive can ensure that the desktop experience has strong continuity with the previous look and feel, and desktop users feel at home, about the same as ever.

But users on mobile would notice a big improvement, and it would be easier for them to engage more.

Logically, if mobile users convert 1/3 as often as desktop, a retailer is only going to spend 1/3rd of the money on mobile that they spend on desktop.


Yes. That might change if more advertisers got better at their own mobile experience, but for now it's a fact of life.
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