Today, web content is increasingly being accessed via hand held devices. As such, businesses that are looking to capitalise online should look to offer users a mobile friendly website that is fully optimised for mobile usage.
- Smartphone penetration reached 45% in the UK
- Tablet usage increased as a percentage of total population to 10% in the UK
- The average user spends 24mins 49 seconds a day surfing the internet from mobile
With point and click being replaced by touching and swiping on many advices, you can take advantage of the various ways that mobile users interact with your content, but you must first ensure that all potential areas of frustration are removed or else the user will simply leave your site and log on to your competition.
Top Tips for Making Your Website Mobile Friendly
Look at the statistics.
It may be the case that your target audience is more senior. Statistics suggest that the number of mobile users over the age of 65 is still quite low, therefore any mobile optimisation strategy that you undertake for that demographic may have little impact. On the other hand, if your target audience is in the age bracket 16-24 then creating mobile friendly websites could result in a great return.
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You can determine the level of demand and identify the type of phone penetration, e.g. Blackberry, Symbian, Android or iPhone, by examining your website statistics. Focus on developing your website for the platform that has the largest reach first.
Consider users using tablet devices
People using tablet devices are more than likely to be in an environment that will give them more time to browse, digest and interact with your content than mobile users. They will happily view videos and wider content than a rushed mobile user who requires a trimmed down version. That being said, the user experience for the tablet user should still be simple, touch-friendly and easy to navigate.
Check how your website appears and functions on your own phone
If you navigate to your own website on your mobile phone, what does it look like? Is the experience good, can you easily navigate between pages and click on buttons? Is your contact information clearly visible? Can you click to call your phone number? All of these things when included on a mobile optimised site can drastically improve the effectiveness of your website on mobile browsers.
You could also check out how your phone works on other devices by testing it on a number of online emulators that give the experience a user would experience on different mobile devices.
Strip away the fat.
Mobile is lean, you want to strip away any unnecessary graphics and content and consider how to make the site easier to view and navigate.
Check how your mobile phone looks across multiple browsers.
Just like traditional internet where people may choose to browse via Internet Explorer, Google Chrome or Firefox, there are many different mobile browsers that people can use depending either on the device they have or personal preference. You can check on how your website looks in different browsers by using a tool such as browsershots.
Avoid extensive use of Flash.
The name of the game with mobile is simplicity. By avoiding any excessive use of flash you will minimise the risk of delaying page response or displaying error messages.
An increasingly relevant part of digital enterprise today is mobile. Furthermore, as Smartphone ownership and usage continues to rise, so will the demand for mobile friendly websites. Take the time to consider how your business is being affected by the ever growing trend.
Smart entrepreneurs and business owners know that mobile usage is an opportunity to be exploited and embraced in order to grow and enhance the way paying customers can interact with them.
Are you taking full advantage of the mobile opportunity?