If you’ve got a business with a website, you’ve probably heard how important being mobile-friendly is, but what does that mean? Keep reading to find out.
What A Mobile Friendly Website Is And Isn’t
Anybody who knows something about digital marketing will tell you that your website needs to be mobile-friendly. Great! What does that mean?
A mobile-friendly website isn’t just some basic layout changes. Even though that may be the impression you get looking at a mobile-friendly website, it goes beyond what’s obvious at first glance.
A mobile-friendly website displays a different version of your website to visitors viewing it from different types of mobile devices so that they will have a better experience. Some ways to give your visitors the best possible experience when visiting your site include:
- Responsive Design - With responsive design, your website’s design adjusts to adapt to the screen size, whether you’re changing the size of your desktop tab or browsing from a mobile device.
- Dynamic Serving - With Dynamic serving, visitors are shown a different version of your site based on the device they’re using.
Giving your website visitors the best possible experience means making sure that your content loads quickly and correctly. Mobile devices are much more limited in terms of power versus desktop machines so you’re going to need to keep that in mind when making your website mobile-friendly. Here are some of the things that go into making your website mobile friendly.
- Theme/Template - Your mobile theme or template needs to be responsive.
- Content - You need to strip back your content.
- Distill your offer - Determine the main goal of each page and make it much more prominent on your mobile version.
- Avoid large chunks of text - Make your site content as short as possible.
- Shorten forms - Forms should only ask for information that’s absolutely essential. Long forms will drive visitors away.
- Images/CSS - Make images and CSS as light as possible. Each element on your website, whether it’s a video or an image that has a file size, or code that needs to be loaded each time the website is clicked on, carries a virtual ‘weight’. The more weight your site has, the longer it’s going to take to load. Google considers website speed a critical ranking factor so slower sites will not rank as well and will be found less in searches.
- Compress your images - Compressing your images greatly reduces their file size without compromising the image quality.
- Host your videos with a third party - Upload your videos to a third party then embed them on your site so that the ‘weight’ of the videos is mostly on the site you choose instead of yours.
- Flash - Avoid Flash. Flash can create nice animations, but it isn’t supported by most mobile devices.
- Buttons - Change button size and placement. Buttons in the wrong place or the wrong size make them hard for people to use.
- Links - Space out your links. Make sure they aren’t too close together so people won’t accidentally click on the wrong one. Also, make sure that you’re only linking to pages that are also mobile-optimized.
- Font - Use a large and readable font. Test how the font size looks on your mobile site. Make fonts as readable and on-brand as possible. Try bolding or capitalizing different lines of text to stop them from merging into each other.
- Pop-Ups - Eliminate pop-ups. Pop-ups can work really well on a desktop version of a site, but when it comes to mobile, they should be avoided. You’re working with a smaller screen and you can’t tailor the pop-up to trigger at key moments.
A good mobile website comes down to speed and content. People prefer a fast-loading website to a slow-loading one and mobile devices aren’t as powerful as desktops. That means your going to need to change the nature of your content to make up for the difference, like staying away from PDFs and presentations that are usually meant for larger screens. When making your website mobile-friendly you should test it regularly to see how well it works by running URLs through Google’s mobile-friendly tool and trying out different device sizes from your desktop. If all this seems like more than you can or want to do, it might be a good idea to find professionals who can help you make sure that your website is mobile-friendly.
If you want to know more about things you should be thinking about outsourcing, read our article, “Seven Tasks Small Businesses Should Outsource”, or contact us.
Tags: website, mobile-friendly