Reasons and Best Practices to Build a Mobile-Friendly Website
Google the term ‘mobile-friendly website’, and you will find an option to test if your website is optimized for mobile devices. The vast number of results (about 1.4 billion) might make you wonder if having a mobile-optimized website is really necessary.
The quick answer is YES, absolutely.
According to a Statista report, in Q4 2022, mobile devices (excluding tablets) accounted for 59.16% of global website traffic, and this proportion is expected to continue to rise. Therefore, having a website optimized for mobile devices is essential. With the widespread availability and usage of smartphones, which are accessible to around 87% of the global population, web design is moving towards providing optimal user experiences on smaller screens.
Creating a mobile-optimized website is becoming increasingly important in today’s digital age. With the rise of mobile devices and the growing number of people accessing the internet on their smartphones and tablets, it is critical for businesses to ensure their websites are optimized for mobile viewing.
In this blog post, we will discuss the reasons why creating a mobile-optimized website is so important and the best practices to do it right.
Why Is Creating a Mobile-Optimized Website Important?
1. Increasing Mobile Usage:
Firstly, the increasing use of mobile devices is a driving force behind the need for mobile-optimized websites. According to Statista, the number of mobile phone users is expected to reach 7.33 billion worldwide in 2023. This means that businesses that don’t optimize their websites for mobile viewing risk losing a significant number of potential customers.
2. User Experience:
Another key reason is the user experience. When people access websites on their mobile devices, they expect the experience to be just as good as if they were viewing it on a desktop computer. A mobile-optimized website ensures that users can easily navigate the site, view content, and make purchases on their mobile devices without any issues.
3. Search Engine Optimization:
Creating a mobile-optimized website can also improve your website’s search engine optimization (SEO). Google has indicated that mobile-friendliness is a ranking factor, which means that websites that are optimized for mobile devices are more likely to appear higher on search engine results pages. In addition, Google has a mobile-first indexing policy, which means that it will prioritize indexing the mobile version of a website over the desktop version.
Read our blog on best SEO practices to be on the first page.
Essential Techniques for Building a Website Optimized for Mobile Devices
1. Choose a Responsive Design:
The first step in creating a mobile-friendly website is to choose a responsive design. A responsive design ensures that your website will automatically adjust to fit the screen size of the device it is being viewed on. This means that your website will look great and be easy to use whether it’s being viewed on a smartphone, tablet, or desktop computer.
A responsive design can adjust to different screen sizes and display relevant content without impacting website loading time. Many website builders, including WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace, offer customizable mobile-responsive themes. If your website is not mobile-friendly, consider adding the viewport meta tag to the head tag.
<meta name=”viewport” content=”width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0″>
2. Simplify Navigation:
When designing a mobile-optimized website, it’s important to simplify navigation to make it easier for users to find what they’re looking for. One way to do this is to use a hamburger menu, which is a common icon consisting of three horizontal lines. When users tap on the icon, a menu with navigation links will appear. This makes it easy for users to navigate your website on their mobile devices without taking up too much screen space.
3. Optimize Images:
Optimizing images is another important step in mobile-friendly website development. Large images can slow down your website’s load time, which can be frustrating for users. To optimize images, you can compress them without sacrificing quality. You can also use images that are specifically designed for mobile devices, which are smaller in size and load faster.
To enhance the efficiency of a website, a technique called lazy loading can be utilized, which involves deferring the loading of non-essential elements, such as images, until they are required. This approach, commonly used in website design and development, can help minimize the number of resources required to load a page and enhance the user experience by reducing loading times.Top of Form
Another method is to use the Lazy loading technique. It is a technique where images are loaded only when necessary. These images are initially placed below the fold of the website, which is the area visible to the user without scrolling. As the user scrolls down, the images are loaded on demand.
4. Use Clear Calls-to-Action:
Clear calls to action are important on any website. Users on mobile devices have less screen space to work with, so it’s important to make it clear what action you want them to take. For example, if you want users to sign up for your newsletter, use a clear and prominent “Sign Up” button.
5. Make Forms Easy to Use:
Forms are a common feature on websites, but they can be tricky to use on mobile devices. To make forms easy to use, keep them as simple as possible. Use large form fields and make it clear what information users need to provide. Just keep the section that is necessary and remove any unnecessary sections to make the form simple and attractive. You can also use autofill to help users fill out forms more quickly and easily.
6. Test Your Website’s Core Web Vitals:
Core Web Vitals are a set of metrics that Google uses to measure the overall user experience of a website. There are three distinct measurements of page speed and user interaction that constitute core web vitals:
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) measures the loading performance of a page, indicating how long it takes for the largest element on the screen to load.
- First Input Delay (FID) measures the interactivity of a page, indicating how long it takes for the page to respond to a user’s first interaction.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) measures the visual stability of a page, indicating how many elements move around on the screen during the page load.
Google considers these metrics as important factors in ranking search results, and they are part of the search engine’s efforts to improve the overall user experience of the web. Check your website’s performance optimizations here: Page speed Insights
7. Redesign Popups or Just Remove Them:
While pop-ups are often criticized, they remain an effective way of drawing a visitor’s attention. It’s not uncommon to see one or two strategically positioned pop-ups on a website, intended to capture leads or convey important information. However, pop-ups can have a negative impact on the mobile user experience, where screen space is limited and even medium-sized pop-ups can be disruptive. In response, Google has established guidelines to regulate pop-ups and prevent them from excessively affecting the user experience.
Google’s rules for pop-ups on mobile devices state that they should be as non-obstructive as possible and only occupy a small portion of the screen. They should also be easy to close, with a visible and appropriately-sized button. However, certain pop-ups containing the necessary information, such as login dialogs or consent notices, are exempt from these guidelines. By adhering to these rules, your website should not experience any negative effects. However, websites that fail to follow these guidelines may be penalized in search engine rankings.
8. Declutter Website Design:
To avoid clutter and confusion on smaller screens, limit the number of calls to action on each web page to only the most critical ones, such as a contact form. A simple design with ample white space and well-organized content will aid navigation and allow users to quickly find what they need. Be sure to remove outdated content that may take up unnecessary space and confuse visitors.
For menus, lengthy lists of options can be overwhelming and take up valuable screen space, particularly on mobile devices. Instead, consider using a hamburger menu, a button that opens a longer menu and helps reduce disarrangement.
9. Test Your Website on Multiple Devices
Finally, it’s important to test your website on multiple devices to ensure that it looks and functions as intended. You should test your friendly website on different smartphones and tablets, as well as on different operating systems, such as iOS and Android. This will help you identify any issues that need to be fixed.
Mobile application is the exclusive choice for large websites, businesses, or services. However, creating an application is significant for all businesses and industries. Mobile app development offers unique benefits that a mobile website can’t offer. According to your market and audience analysis, plan for Android or iOS app development. To ensure that application is built with maximum efficiency, choose a trusted mobile app development company.
Read our guide on how to hire a foremost mobile app development company.
In conclusion, creating a mobile-optimized website is crucial for businesses that want to provide a good user experience and stay competitive in today’s digital landscape. By choosing a responsive design, simplifying navigation, optimizing images, using clear calls-to-action, making forms easy to use, and ensuring core web vitals, you can create a mobile-friendly website that will help you reach and engage with more users on mobile devices.
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