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Tips to manage desktop and mobile phone versions of web site, Google

One of the most common problems for webmasters who run both mobile and desktop versions of a site, is that the “mobile version of site appears for users on a desktop computer,” or that the “desktop version of site appears when someone finds them from a mobile device”. To overcome this scenario, Google offer two options:

  • Redirect mobile users to correct version: when a mobile user or crawler (like Googlebot-Mobile) accesses desktop version, you can redirect them to corresponding mobile version of same page. When you redirect, make sure that content on corresponding mobile/desktop URL matches as closely as possible.
  • Switch content based on User-agent: If your site uses same URL for desktop & mobile content, you can change the format according to User-agent, so that desktop users can see a desktop version of content while mobile users can see a mobile version. However, note if you fail to configure your site correctly, your site could be considered to be cloaking, which can lead to your site disappearing from Google search results.
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