Sites for mobile devices

  1. General guidelines
  2. Questions and answers about mobile sites

Search engines are improving search results for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Mobile users are most likely to view a site with adaptive design, dynamic page layout or a mobile version of the site.

General guidelines

The recommendations for webmasters below are relevant for all approaches to site adaptation.

  • Resources should be accessible for the Yandex indexing robot: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 8_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/600.1.4 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/8.0 Mobile/12B411 Safari/600.1.4 (compatible; YandexBot/3.0;+http://yandex.com/bots). The robots.txt file must allow scanning CSS and Javascript that are responsible for displaying the site on mobile devices. Otherwise, the site pages might be displayed incorrectly in the search results.
  • Site pages must respond to the server with the 200 OK HTTP code. You can check the server response in Yandex.Webmaster.
  • Don't use Flash, Silverlight, or Applet technologies on pages that are intended for mobile users. These technologies aren't necessarily supported on mobile devices.

    Tip. For example, users can't view an interactive section of the site or videos implemented using Flash. We recommend using HTML5 to integrate content, or eliminating heavy and complex interactive elements.
  • Make your site's content maximally visible on a mobile device screen.
  • The site content should fit on the screen horizontally.
  • The text size in pixels should allow the entire text to be read comfortably on a mobile device screen.

Check how well the site is adapted for mobile devices in the Tools → Audit pages for mobile compatibility section in Yandex.Webmaster.

Questions and answers about mobile sites

Can the content of the mobile site version differ from the main version?

You can optimize the content of the site pages for mobile search. For example, you can leave only the content that will be useful for the users of mobile devices. At the same time, the mobile pages' content shouldn't be dramatically different from the content of the main version.

How can I avoid duplicate content?

Yandex treats the main version and the mobile version of the site as separate sites and indexes them separately from each other.

To help the robot identify the mobile version correctly, specify the URLs of the mobile pages on the corresponding pages of the main site. For example, you can use the link element:

<link rel="alternate" media="only screen and (max-width: 640px)" href="http://m.example.com/page.html"/>
Do I need to set redirects to the mobile version of the site?

You can redirect the user from the main site to the mobile version, depending on the user agent of the device from which the user browses the site.

Do I need to add a mobile version of the site (domain or subdomain) to Yandex.Webmaster?

You can add a mobile version of the site to Yandex.Webmaster to track the page indexing statistics.

Can I create a mobile version of the site in a subdirectory (folder)?

If the mobile version of the site is located in the main site directory, the Yandex indexing robot can't index it correctly. We recommend that you create a mobile version in a separate domain or in the subdomain of the main site.

How do I tell the Yandex robot that the adaptive site version is available?

For sites with adaptive design, use the <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1"> meta tag to specify the viewport. For more information, see the Using HTML tags section.

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