Creating a website that is friendly for mobile users requires giving more thought to quite a few usability concerns.
More importantly, Google has announced that on April 21, 2015 websites will start ranking by their mobile friendliness. And everyone is worried as to whether their websites will make the grade.
Keep in mind that most webmasters either use a “responsive-designed” website (which changes automatically by identifying the device the viewer is using, and responds to that device) or they create a completely separate mobile site like a DudaMobile website.
But if your site isn’t designed using one of these features, today I’m sharing five tips to help you improve the mobile friendliness of your current website (no matter which style you’ve used).
Use Fluid Widths
Avoid fixed widths like the plague. With so many different devices out there, from desktops, laptops, tablets, and cell phones, trying to create one fixed width to work on all devices simply isn’t realistic.
Instead, try to use fluid widths wherever you can. This type of structure will automatically adapt to the width of the web browser, making your site look good on any device.
Try to have as few images as you can on your site.
For one, images hog bandwidth, forcing users to download a lot of content on their mobile phone and eating away at their data usage.
Secondly, if images are too large, they will display incorrectly making the viewer question what your site is really about. In turn, they will leave your site and might never return.
Website Buttons Should be Large Enough to Tap
Most smartphones today use a finger tap to simulate a mouse click. In order to make buttons easy to use, design them large enough to tap without having to use the zoom feature.
Buttons designed for mobile friendliness should be at least 44 pixels in width and 44 pixels in height. This size makes them easy enough to tap using any smartphone device.
Websites designed for desktop users tend to include more links in the navigation bar and more content on the home page, making it a scrollable page.
However, creating a mobile-friendly website requires fewer choices in the navigation and less scrolling content on the home page. The main parts of your site should be easily accessible.
If you’re using both a full version website and a mobile version website, add a link to your full version site at the bottom of the footer on your mobile site. This helps to simplify your design, while allowing access to more options, if needed.
Don’t assume that just because your site looks good on one cell phone or tablet that it looks good on every device.
Test your website on as many different devices as you can. You’ll likely find that your site looks good on some devices, but doesn’t display properly on others.
If you actively seek out errors and fix them, you’ll stay ahead of the websites not optimized for mobile viewing and keep your ranking high in the searches.
These five mobile marketing tips will help you create websites for mobile devices that look great, no matter what device your viewer is using.
Want to test to see if your website is mobile-friendly? Check it out with Google’s Mobile-Friendly Testing Tool here
To your continued online success,
Carmen “Carm” Wisenbaker, WordPress Webmaster & Master Certified SEO Expert
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