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Just Google it! How to keep your Club top of mind.

On 12th May, Google introduced more mobile related changes and officially completed the roll out of their mobile-friendly algorithm. The main aim of the project was to reward mobile-compatible websites by giving them a boost in the rankings of mobile search results.

There’s no denying we are a time poor and increasingly mobile society, with over 79% of Australian’s owning a smartphone and over 59% owning a tablet device*. The situation is similar in Asia. We mostly use our devices for social networking, entertainment and gaming. These facts mean it’s more important than ever to engage with your target market in the online environment, not just inside the gym.

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What are Google algorithms and how do they affect my business?

In the World Wide Web, a lot happens behind the scenes when we Google terms like ‘Les Mills’ ‘gym’ ‘group fitness class’ ‘bodypump class near me’ It’s Google algorithms that ensure we are matched the right answer to our web queries every time in the form of quick, legible, fresh, quality content. They take into consideration region, key words on websites and page rank. So will your business website benefit, or be punished by #mobilegeddon?  

According to the Nielsen Global Consumer Exercise Trends Survey 2014, 71% of respondents rated convenient location as the key reason members join and stay at a club meaning location mentions on your website should be featured and prominent so your club appears first in local area searches.

As a health club manager, reaching potential and existing members online can mean a big difference in new membership and retention rates. Time spent on smartphones and mobile devices continues to grow, with Millennials being a highly active generation in terms of fitness and social media savvy and a target demographic you want to keep up with. Millennials currently make up 50% of the world's population and 50% of the regular exercisers doing gym type activities*

Ideally, a higher ranking website will lead to a higher volume of traffic that can, in turn convert into members. Having a presence on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram will complement that.

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These latest Google updates mean users can find your mobile-friendly site quickly without the hassle of tapping, zooming or adjusting their screen. If however, your site fails Google’s mobile test, your business page could drastically drop in rankings. Not only is there a high likelihood that users will simply close your site or move to another if it’s slow to load or illegible, but it may not show up at all in search enquiries. This is an area requiring improvement nationally, with 55% of small business websites, still not mobile compatible*

To save you time and help you assess your online presence with your web developer, we have identified the following helpful articles:

If you are not mobile-friendly, or if you want to ensure that you are, check the Google mobile-friendly tool, and check Google’s mobile guidelines

Above all, remember…be easy to find and stay top of mind!

References used:

  1. Deloitte Mobile Consumer Survey 2015 
  2. Nielsen Global Consumer Exercise Trends Survey 2014
  3. AC Nielsen Les Mills global consumer fitness survey 2013
  4. PR Wire 2016