Optimize Your Website for Mobile Users
A few years ago, the term Mobilegeddon was coined. Ever since then many articles and strategies have been developed to better implement the use of Mobile devices with your website and blogs, etc. Mobilegeddon is a name given by webmasters and web-developers to Google's algorithm update of April 21, 2015. The main effect of this update is to give priority to web sites that display well on smartphones and other mobile devices. The change does not affect searches made from a desktop computer or a laptop.(Wikipedia)
Mobile is now the norm. People may have desktop computers but most will agree that they use a mobile device far more than their desktops. If you think about an average day, you check your mail, maybe get some news, check stock prices, get directions to your next meeting, call your mom, browse for Mom's birthday present and order right from your phone. It's not the way of the coming future. It is now!
So how does this affect your ranking with your website and social media marketing strategy? Well, if you've done it right, it will help your ranking. If not, it could have a negative effect. Website Magazine expects that 63.4% of users worldwide will be accessing their content via their mobile device instead of their desktop computers!
Designing your website for the end mobile user brings a whole new set of challenges. Everyone wants to present the best possible user experience while keeping the most important parts of their website intact. It is hard to balance that combination. In fact, many businesses are choosing to build two websites for users. One for the computer interaction and one for the mobile user. Regardless of which way you choose to go, these tips will help you Optimize Your Website for Mobile Users. Many of these tips apply to both website types, but you need to remember that Mobile Optimization is more important because people are on the go and a slow loading page will not keep traffic on your site.
Here are 8 Tips to Help Optimize Your Website for Mobile Users:
Well-structured. Remember due to screen size, a website might look great on your desktop computer, but not on a mobile device. The desktop website will be able to offer more menus, more information and more graphics. These are the same things that will slow a mobile website down. The mobile site should be uncluttered without unnecessary menus and dropdowns, but with enough information to satisfy the end user.
Fast Loading Time. Given the limitations of mobile browsing, your website should load fast. Not everyone has the latest and greatest smart phones and tablets and slow loading websites are the bane of these end users. Most people don't have the patience to wait and will move on to your competition.
No Pop-ups or Flash. Pop-ups and flash have even taken a back seat on regular desktop websites due to their loading and playing time. First, not all phones support Flash, secondly, if you are trying to show the same Flash it probably wouldn't play well on the device. So skip the fancy stuff.
Easy To Navigate. Similarly to your desktop website, your mobile site should be even easier for the end user to navigate. Important information should be right up front and easy to access and the user should understand what you are offering without sacrificing the usefulness of your content.
Use Prominent Calls to Action. Because you have less screen to play with, be sure your CTAs are readily visible and that the user understands what you want them to do. They could be to subscribe to blogs, shopping cart options or other similar uses.
Use Ergonomics in Mobile Design. Mobile devices have smaller screens and are not as easy to navigate with small buttons and small Xs. Make it easy for the user to move around or to X out of pages they no longer wish to view.
SEO. We cannot impress upon you the importance of SEO on any device or platform. It is very important not to hinder your SEO rankings with your efforts. Rather, you should pay attention to how the search engines read and rank your mobile website. Make changes accordingly.
Combining Functionality and User Experience. Again, this is a fine line. You want enough information on your mobile site for the end user to be interested enough to leave their information or make the purchase, but not so much that it trips them up as they are navigation to do so.
Bonus. Consider some of the mobile websites you have been on. What was good about your visit? What hindered your ability to get around? Did they provide an easy to see Call to Action? Or was everything buried in links and menus?
Design your Mobile website around the experiences you have had on other sites and you will knock your site out of the park!
Bonus Two. One last thing I should mention that you may or may not know, but Millennials are loyal to Mobile and they are your up and coming target market.