If you told someone 50 years ago that they could browse the internet on their cell phone, they’d scoff. It’s a hard contrast to 2020, when — according to Perficient — over 60 per cent of U.S. websites were visited via mobile devices. Today, mobile browsing has fully transitioned from convenience to necessity. Having a site that isn’t mobile-friendly simply isn’t an option.
Google Search Central Blog found that the importance of having a mobile-friendly site changed in 2014 when Google announced a mobile-friendly label. Though the label is no longer active, the browser still ranks mobile-friendly sites higher in search results.
It’s important to understand what “mobile-friendly” means. Essentially, you’re offering visitors a different version of your website. How mobile-friendly your website is can be measured on a scale, and you can always work to improve it. This can be done a number of ways, including the following:
The site’s design should easily fit the size of a phone or tablet. This a crucial aspect for the transition from computer to mobile device since users can become frustrated with an unresponsive site.
Make it Purpose-Driven
Consider what visitors might use from your site when browsing, then, optimize important features of the site. If users consider buying from your site, the process should be as simple as possible. If the purpose is to browse content, focus on showcasing high-quality content.
Focus on Speed
How fast a page loads on a mobile device is going to determine its success. With almost half of visitors abandoning a site after three seconds of waiting, load times are critical. They are also a major factor in Google rankings.
You can check your website’s speed with a speed test. If your site isn’t running at optimal speed, there are several options available to improve it.
Get Rid of Pop-Ups
Pop-up ads can be irritating on a regular computer, but on a mobile device they’re a real hassle. Often, ads are designed to be difficult to close. You have to hit that X on the precise pixel or else you might get redirected to purchase whatever is advertised. If you’re going to have ads on your mobile site, make them easy to dismiss.
Don’t Be Too Cluttered
Too often, websites might want to include every feature available on the desktop website for fear of losing business. This can make a mobile page difficult to navigate. Instead, it’s better to pare things down to the site’s core elements.
This includes a hamburger button that can allow visitors to see your entire menu with just a tap. It also offers a leaner, more compact version of the site.
Or a Make it a Mobile App
Often, websites will opt for having a separate app for their mobile customers. The usefulness of this option depends entirely on the way your site is structured. The app should be well-designed in this case.
Kenny Hedges | Contributing Writer