Think With Your Finger (And Four Other Tips for Building a Mobile-Friendly Website)
There’s no denying that mobile-friendly is the way to go if you’re looking to design or redesign a website. In fact, it’s absolutely essential in the modern age.
Everybody owns a smartphone and the odds are high that most people will use their phone to look at your website. In fact, 2017 saw mobile break through as the most popular way to access websites, with 50.3% of all website traffic coming from mobile devices. 2018 looks set to continue that trend. According to Statista, mobile has accounted for 52.2% of all website traffic so far this year.
So, why don’t you have a mobile-friendly website?
A poor mobile experience makes your business appear unprofessional. People hit a bad website and immediately bounce away because you haven’t catered to their needs.
Those are potential customers that you’re allowing to slip through your fingers. More importantly, that’s now over half of the people that come to your website that you’re not catering for.
You need a mobile-friendly website. And with these tips, you’ll be able to build one.
Tip #1 – Think With Your Finger (Or Thumb)
This is a crucial aspect of designing a mobile website or a mobile app. If a required action isn’t something that you can do easily with your finger or thumb, it’s something that you need to change.
Speed and efficiency are the key when somebody’s browsing a mobile section. People don’t want to spend ages pinching screens and scrolling to get to the important information. They want it at their fingertips…literally.
This extends to specific aspects of design too. Let’s say that you have an important CTA button on one page of your website. That button needs to be bold enough for people to notice it and big enough for people to press it without having to worry about pressing something else.
It may seem like a little thing. But design that doesn’t take how people use mobile devices into account can seriously damage your website or app’s conversion rates and usage figures.
Tip #2 – Don’t Build it Separately
During the advent of mobile technology, people tended to keep their desktop websites separate from their mobile ones.
That’s an outdated methodology. Today, we have responsive design tools that allow us to create a single website that displays as you need it to across all devices.
That’s important too because maintaining two websites is a massive burden. If you go the separate route, that means you have to do everything twice. Every update, server issue, or technical work means double the amount of hours spent than you really need to spend.
Of course, that makes your business less productive. And that means that having separate sites is actively costing you money in a world where a much better solution exists.
Embrace responsive design tools when building your website. You’ll appreciate how much easier everything is once you have a single website to work from.
Tip #3 – Always Go For Speed
Optimisation is the key with every aspect of mobile development, whether you’re building a website or a mobile app. If you’re using elements that take an eternity to load, you’re essentially telling users to bounce away and try another option.
Speed is of the essence, so optimise wherever you’re able. You want loading times to take less than a couple of seconds. That’s because every 100ms of delaying could cost you 1% of the people who come to your website. That means you lose 10% of visitors if your site takes a second longer than it should to load.
Thankfully, there are plenty of tools that you can use to check your site’s speed. Pagespeed Insights is an excellent example. It shows you how long the page takes to load and what you can do about it.
Here’s a bonus tip. Images are often the cause of slow load times. Don’t use multi-megabyte images throughout your site. Instead, use smaller JPEG images to optimise load times. You still want to go high-res. Most mobile screens display crystal clarity. But you need to strike a balance.
Tip #4 – Keep Content Simple
People will only spend a finite amount of time looking at their phones. If you’re bombarding them with reams of content that doesn’t contain any important information, they’re going to lose interest.
This may mean adapting your content strategy to suit the mobile user. And again, this applies to both mobile websites and mobile apps. Keep things short, simple, and scannable. Highlight the important points and make them as early as you can.
That’s not to say that you don’t need the long content pieces too. People will still want useful insights and tips that drill down into the heart of their problem. But you need to cater some content to mobile users. Provide a quick answer or demonstrate that you have the solution. Keep it simple and you’ll keep mobile users engaged.
Tip #5 – It’s Not a One and Done Thing
Again, this tip applies to any mobile solution that you build.
You cannot just make it and leave it. Technology advances at such a rapid pace that a site that’s brand new today may be completely out of date in a years’ time.
It’s wise to adopt toe AGILE methodology when building a mobile website. Get it up and working, then making repeated iterative updates so that you’re constantly improving the user experience.
Keep an eye on the latest trends in mobile design and make sure to jump on any that are taking off. You don’t want your website or app to seem dated in the eyes of users. Plus, you’re on the constant lookout for new devices that create new challenges for your website. Keep updating and improving to ensure your site or mobile app performs to its peak potential.
The Final Word
That’s just a little insight into how you can build a mobile-friendly website. Now, you need to work with a team that can help you to achieve your goals.
Contact Imobisoft today to find out more. We can guide you through everything that you need to know to create a great mobile experience for your users.