In our now technology-driven lifestyles, our mobile phones are always in sight. We constantly browse websites, update our social media accounts and take pictures. Every day, people are moving away from the traditional desktop and more towards the multi-functional mobile device. This has changed the online world, and companies are now forced to design websites optimized for mobile phones and tablets. Companies need to readjust their websites designed for desktops of 15-30” screens to a now smaller screen of 4-6”. A mobile site strategy is now an absolute must – here are the Do’s and Dont’s when it comes to creating a mobile-friendly version.
Realise the importance user experience
User experience focuses on human-computer interactions, specifically on the behaviour that is generated by a user visiting a certain website. You want your visitors to find what they are looking for as fast as possible – do so by minimizing homepage clutter, adding quick links, creating a simple to-the-point menu and reducing large images. Most importantly, you need to ensure that your mobile site is always fully functional to truly generate a great UX.
Use a simple layout – it works best
Choose your color scheme carefully to ensure a nice flow between pages and always add the menu in the top of the page. Do so that no matter how far the user scrolls down, the ease of navigation will be optimal. A good way to get a feel of how to optimize mobile sites is by visiting a few sites via your phone to look at the recurring layouts.
Put a high emphasis on media
Incorporate high-quality images on your mobile site – although remember to optimize them at a decent size which will reduce overall load time and not frustrate the user. For videos, make sure that they only load when the visitor clicks it – not everyone has unlimited data on their devices. Using images as a link is also a very creative way to design the homepage.
Create large enough icons
Having large enough icons is extremely important in creating a mobile site. Keep in mind that Iphones and Androids have different size screens therefore optimizing it for an easy click is mandatory. So many times people have accidentally clicked the wrong link due to the small size of the menu or icon. It is quite an aggravating situation. The space between two links also has to be taken into consideration.
Ask for feedback
Create a separate page where you can get feedback from the mobile site users – ask them a few of the following questions:
- How do you find the mobile site? What could we improve upon?
- What did you enjoy/not enjoy about it?
- Any suggestions, comments or recommendations?
- Does the site crash often on your mobile device?
- How fast does the content load? Does anything not function properly?
Make sure to create a fast and easy way for them to answer – most people will not respond to questions if the page looks overwhelming. Only do this for the first few months of the mobile platform being active until you get a basic understanding of what people enjoy.
Make it easy for your users
It happens often that people who visit your mobile site do so to quickly find your location or to call for information. Incorporate a “Call” and “Get to here” button to make it super easy for them to get in touch with you. Best believe that they will appreciate it.
And by clutter we mean misplaced pictures, weird colors or content that looks messy. Visit your mobile site frequently to test out its reliability and its overall look – even for the smallest changes. Ask around to get quick feedback of a change. Super simple, yet generates helpful tips.
Because phone screens are smaller, it doesn’t mean that the writing should also be smaller. People like to be able to read content whether it is on blogs or sites. Not being able to read will result in frustration. It’s very easy to change font size on mobile optimized websites – always make sure that the content can be easily read.
New tab openings for every click
Another very unpleasant feature of some mobile sites is the opening of new tabs for every single click – please do not build that type of site unless it is a registration form. It simply creates a ton of clutter. If, however, the user desires to open a new tab for a page, there is a feature built into the browser for that already.
Visit this website for more information on a mobile site strategy.