Whether you’re looking to fine-tune your current website, create a new landing page to increase your conversion rate or start completely from scratch, it is important to consider how mobile-friendly your website is. According to data collected by Jumpshot in 2019, Google mobile traffic now makes up approximately 50% of all Google’s search traffic. With a figure like that, it’s hard to ignore how necessary it is for your website to be functional and appealing to a user regardless of what device they’re using.
With this in mind, we thought we’d share with you a few top tips for making a more mobile-friendly website. From there, you’ll be able to develop your user experience, effectively show off your brand to a wider demographic and increase your web traffic.
How mobile-friendly is your website?
Before we dive headfirst into the pool of mobile-friendly tips, it’s a valuable exercise to audit your current website. By visiting Google’s own mobile-friendly testing system you can get immediate results on how well your website is performing. Where can you improve? What needs to be changed? All this and more can be discovered to give you a great starting point for developing the friendliness of your website on mobile.
Top mobile-optimisation tips
1. Make your buttons large enough to work on any device
When you have the luxury of a mouse or trackpad, clicking on a button is straightforward. But what happens when you move over to just using your fingers and thumbs on a mobile phone screen? What was an innocuous feature on the desktop version of your site has become a hellish ordeal on a smaller device. A small button can be a great hindrance.
The solution to a user’s frustration is to create bigger buttons. That’s not to say you maintain the same size across all devices. Instead, take the time to create clickable buttons that are responsive to each device whether it be mobile, tablet or desktop. The trick to doing so can sometimes take some technical know-how but support is always out there if needed.
2. Have a call to action in the initial viewport
When considering how mobile-friendly your website is, you should also take into account how effectively you entice users to act whether it’s buying a product, booking a webinar or filling in a contact form. You may have thought about the way your website looks on a desktop; it offers a lot more space in the initial viewport to present information alongside a call-to-action.
With the mobile version of your site, it is wise to be more selective with what you present on screen. First impressions are everything which is why you should make the most of what will be the first thing a user will see when your website loads on their mobile. To increase the likelihood of direct engagement, include a clear call to action immediately. It could be a button. It could be a short piece of copy directing the user to a particular location. Whatever you choose, you’ll gain a higher proportion of results if you utilise your space on mobile.
3. Compress your images
How your website loads on desktop can be dramatically different to that on mobile. When it comes to loading time, a big culprit for causing slowdowns is imagery.
There are a host of tools out there perfect for the job. If you’re using WordPress, the EWWW Image Optimizer plugin is perfect for the job or maybe even try EZGif for compressing individual files. By simply compressing your image files, your load speed will increase without having any adverse effects on what a user will see.
4. Choose a simple design
This is not just a vital feature of a mobile-friendly website. It really applies to all sites and pages found across the web. Take Google for example. Although it is an unbelievably complicated system that has developed into a global power on the internet, its design is simple.
Even if your website contains complicated tools like e-commerce management, finance calculators or use of customisable web applications, a simple design can make it all seem less intimidating to a user. Not only will a simple design keep a user’s attention but the speed at which it will load on a device will greatly improve how mobile-friendly it is.
5. Avoid Flash
It may not be common knowledge but this represents a significant hurdle to get over for some users. Adobe Flash Player (or simply “Flash”) is a software for viewing multimedia contents, executing rich Internet applications, and streaming audio and video. This was once a common feature of websites but has largely gone out of fashion and with good reason.
Not only will it greatly slow down your website but a high proportion of mobile browsers do not render content built with Flash at all! In the constantly changing landscape of web development, it is our recommendation that you find a web design or theme that works without it.
6. Minify your CSS
Similar to imagery, it is advisable to consider compressing site-wide files for the benefit of mobile-friendliness. This is especially true for files that control the overall look and style of your website – CSS. By using a CSS minifier tool, you can quickly compress files that take up too much space, therefore, allowing a fast load time for your mobile website. This is something you’ll need to discuss with your webmaster or web developer if you’re unsure.
7. Use a framework like Bootstrap
For those of you who have an interest in going deeper into the coding behind a website, there are numerous tools out there specifically designed to make for a more mobile-friendly experience. Take Bootstrap, for example. This useful system created by experts at Twitter is a front-end framework that allows for quick and automatic scaling of your website for any and all devices – especially mobile.
So, rather than wasting whole hours, even days, correcting the styling of one element so it shows up perfectly on iOS and Android devices, you can use this pre-built system without having to worry about the overt complexities of website styling.
8. Test. Test. Test.
No matter how great your site looks, how clear your call to action is or how clickable your buttons are, there are always new innovations within web development that need addressing. What may have worked a year ago may have changed over time. That’s why the importance of frequent testing cannot be underestimated. Set a time every few months to open up your website on your mobile phone and other devices and audit the performance, design and overall experience of your website. Are you finding any actions difficult to perform? Is there an old feature that seems somewhat jarring on a new device?
These questions are important to ask in order to maintain a modern website that holds a strong, mobile-friendly user experience. You may want to ask your employees to have a look or consider hiring a developer to offer a fresh pair of eyes in the testing process.
By taking on board a few of these top tips for making a more mobile-friendly website, you can strive for greatness in establishing a strong user experience that transcends any and all devices. We realise that assistance is sometimes required for the more complicated processes in building a website that’s more mobile-friendly and we’re more than happy to offer that support.
If you’re looking for assistance in the creation of a website that looks fantastic on desktop, mobile & tablet get in touch with us today. We’ll enhance your website’s user experience and increase your web traffic in no time.