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The Do's And Don'ts Of Mobile Friendly Web Design
The Do's Of Mobile Friendly Web Design
Today the most important thing you can do for your website is to ensure it is mobile friendly. Today, the majority of all traffic to most websites are mobile users, so ensuring you have a mobile friendly website isn't just good. It's a necessity.
The best thing you can do for your business is to invest in a desktop and a mobile version of the website. You can't really afford to skimp out on the mobile design. If it looks like garbage on smartphones, your potential customers will assume your business isn't as credible as your competition.
In most cases, customers place higher trust and credibility in a business whose website offers a better user experience, even though this isn't always an indication of quality. There was a study put out by Stanford that proves this is the case for the majority of the visitors any website receives, so it's not just a few visitors but the majority.
When building, redesigning, or managing your website, ensure your visitors will have a positive experience and that your layout makes the most sense possible. The less confusing your users feel when using your website, the more likely they will convert into paying customers. A sophisticated, simple, and easy navigation that uses a logical structure and hierarchy is the best way to achieve this.
Optimized Load Times
One of the quickest ways to lose your visitors is to have a slow-loading website. Today your mobile users are spoiled. They're used to 5G speeds, and most websites load in less than a quarter of a second, so if your website is taking 1, 2, or even 3 seconds - or longer - to load, you need to fix that.
Figure out why your loading time is taking so long. You can do this in various ways, but perhaps the easiest way is to open up the console and inspect the page with Google Lighthouse, or even use Google PageSpeed Insights. They'll outline any issues preventing your site from being able to load faster.
It will seem pretty daunting at first, but you'll have to Go through each article listed to determine how you need to tackle it. You can either do this work yourself or, honestly because some of these issues can be rather involved, it might make sense to hire a professional to debug and clean up these issues for you so that you can focus on your business.
Our team at Spirra Digital using a quick audit can efficiently determine what is preventing you from seeing the visitors and conversions you deserve. If you're wanting to overhaul your website, it might be worth giving us a call to see what can be done to optimize your content.
There is nothing worse than visiting a website and finding out that only the desktop version works. When you see that just being on a mobile device breaks the website, for one, visitors will get easily frustrated, and for two, it pushes mobile users into the arms of your competitors.
Literally, all the competition would have to do if your website breaks on mobile phones is to make sure they have a responsive website. Just by doing that, they're already demanding more respect and reverence than their competitors without a responsive website.
Older visitors might not care as much, but you can bet your bottom dollar that anyone younger than 30 will care greatly about the mobile user experience. Most younger generations don't search out products and services on a desktop but on their mobile device. For this reason alone, catering to this demographic of mobile traffic is so important.
In general, you don't want any images larger than 200KB, and even more ideally, even smaller than 100KB is possible. Basically, the smaller, the better. When your users visit your website on their smartphone, their processing power is severely limited as compared to the what they'll experience on a desktop site.
Due to this limited processing power, if all of your images are 200KB - 2MB, you're going to have loading times that are much slower than the average smartphone user is expecting to experience. Because of this increased page loading time chances are the user isn't going to be pleased, and oftentimes this may even cause them to leave.
The user experience should always be a top priority, and one way to help ensure your users have a positive experience on your website is to make sure that your photos are sized properly, make sure they're labeled properly, and their file size is within the target range of 0 - 200KB.
Simplified Navigation System
The best way to improve your user experience is to do some usability testing on how visitors navigate through your website. The best navigation is simple navigation, so taking the time to lay out a logical, easy-to-use, and easier-to-understand navigation system is very important to your overall user experience.
Next to a broken website, the easiest way to irritate your users is to offer a mobile website that makes no sense. If your customers don't know how to get to where they want to go, they'll feel anxious, and irritated, and they'll leave.
The best way around this, however again, is to develop mobile interfaces that are so simple an infant can use them. Stick with common conventions. Don't try to get fancy in regards to the links you use. Use "Home" for the nav link to your homepage or "About Us" for your about us page. Don't get crazy trying to be unique with links like "Learn About Us," or "Home Base," or something similar. It's understandable if you have certain in-house terms you'd rather use than conventional ones. Still, almost always, it's best to stick with conventions - unless you can improve upon the conventional.
If you're a developer and you've taken the time to either write your website from scratch, or you're using a web builder and you added some custom code, make sure you minimize it when you're finished! It's the extra effort like this that will help search engines and users alike love your website all the more!
Design For Mobile Devices First
I'm sure you've heard of this phrase before, but mobile-first design is definitely the way to go. What this means, is building your website for mobile devices first, before you start to work on the designs for desktop. There are various tools you can use to design your website before you start actually building it from scratch or with a builder.
For example, you can use Figma, or Adobe XD to design your website for different devices so you know your design looks amazing on a phone, a tablet, and a desktop. The main thing is that you make sure your design is responsive, so no matter the phone your user has, your site will look great. As long as you focus on making your website design simple professional, and you're sure
The Don'ts Of Mobile Friendly Websites
Now that you understand some aspects and features of what you should be doing for your mobile friendly website, we'll go into what should be avoided. The most important thing to keep in mind when you're building a website for your users is the usability. You want to carry out extensive testing by getting 10 - 20 people testing each page of the website.
The main goal of this testing will be to determine that regardless of the device they're using, they can navigate easily, use all of the features without any confusion, and understand each page's goal. Your mobile site should be effortless and fun to use. If you want to go into more depth, we have another article walking you through the biggest things to avoid in SEO that can help you dial in these issues a bit more.
When you have large images, you're going to force your users to suffer through slow loading times, unloaded images, and an overall poor user experience. The quickest way to slow down any site is to have images that aren't optimized in terms of their file size. All you need to do is to use a program website like Optimizilla to reduce the file size of all images, re-download them, rename them, and use them as required.
The most important one to remember in our list of do's and don'ts has got to be not ensuring your website is mobile friendly. It isn't enough that your site looks great on desktop. It needs to look great on all mobile devices, otherwise you're going to lose out on incredibly valuable mobile traffic. In fact, the majority of users most websites get are visiting the site on their phone. The quickest way to lose these visitors would be to have a web design that breaks on mobile devices.
It's 2023, there really isn't an excuse for having a site that isn't optimized for all users on all devices. If you aren't sure how to make your web design responsive for mobile, then it would be wise to hire a web design team to take care of your project. Your users deserve the best experience possible, and quite frankly so does your business, because without a good experience you're much less likely to make customers.
Slow Loading Times
Given that most users are visiting your website on their phones, it's important that you don't bog their devices down. The easiest way to ensure you have quick pagespeeds would be to follow the advice in this article. If you want to go even further than that, it might be worth it to check out what services our Grand Rapids agency offers that can help you achieve the types of speeds you want to see.
Regardless of the systems in place, you always want to create simple, easy-to-use and easy-to-follow systems. Whether the systems being created are navigational systems, transactional, or informative systems, test each pipeline, application and system created thoroughly before serving it to your users.
Given that the internet is many decades old, your users have a lot of experience with the web, and all types of systems that many businesses create, and they'll know when something is poorly made. If your users have to think about what they should do next, where they can find something, or even worse - what a page is about - then you need to be creating better systems.
This advice goes especially for your mobile website. Any mobile apps need to be so effortless a child can easily navigate through them, so it would be wise to have users of all ages test your content on various operating systems.
Once you've finished adequately carrying out the test phase, you can begin to focus more on the overall design of your mobile website. The main thing to keep in consideration would be that your mobile website and your desktop website are both obvious in the way they are to be used, because as is true in all aspects of business - if you confuse them you'll lose them.
Not Adding Interactions For The User's Finger
It's not enough to add great interactions for your users on desktop. You'll also need to spoil your users visiting your mobile website with great interactions as well. They should know when they've clicked on a button, or they've interacted with this link, or that picture.
Not everything in your mobile website needs to be animated, but you do need some quality subtle interactions on the mobile site to they can understand what they have interacted with.
Examples Of Mobile Friendly Websites
Below we've attached some great examples of mobile website designs that are responsive, easy to use and that look great. Some great examples of everything we've discussed can be found in the links below, so if you're wanting to improve your website, definitely visit each site below.
Spirra Digital is a web development company based out of Grand Rapids, and if you look at our website it doesn't matter which device you're on, it looks fantastic. Our attention to detail has allowed us to experience climbing analytics over the life of our website.
DeepEarth Technologies, Inc. is an environmental remediation company and is one of our past clients. If you look at their website, you'll see some great examples of what a navigation system should look like, as well as how easily you can move around and understand the site regardless of which device you're on.
Tree Service Kalamazoo
Top Tree Service Kalamazoo is a company focused on serving Kalamazoo with tree care, and if you look at their website as well you'll see the same thing - regardless of the device you can easily navigate and use the website.
Now that you understand the main things you need to be doing for your website, as well as the main things that should be avoided, what're you waiting for? It's time to either get started improving your website, or letting a professional take care of the work for you. Regardless of which option you choose, to do it yourself, or to invest in a crew to take care of it for you, it's important to keep in mind the things you want to convey to your clients, your goals, and what you hope to achieve with your website. As always if you have any questions, feel free to give us a call, contact us, email us, or book a consultation call with us if you have particular goals you want help achieving with your website.