6 Simple Ways To Make Mobile-Friendly Websites
Is it more important now more than ever for websites to be more mobile-friendly? This question must be looming over business owners’ heads. Why?
It’s because the way people are using the internet is changing, and it’s doing so at such a fast rate. If websites are not quick to respond, they could lose the traction and following they’ve worked so hard to achieve.
Another fact is that around 80% of the top sites are all optimized for mobile according to Alexa rankings. And around 80% of internet users access to connect via their smartphones.
This trend is largely based on the fact that it is much easier to browse the net via phones and tablets. People are not limited to the amount of time they have to spend online. They can bring their device anywhere, and many of the sites that are mobile optimized are far easier to access than those that are not.
This is great news for a lot of companies and websites that are looking to gain more online presence because redesigning a site to be optimized for mobile is cheaper than creating a completely new site.
What is a mobile-friendly site?
A mobile-friendly site simply means that a website has been designed and developed for users who are on their mobile devices.
As IT consultancy companies will advise, mobile-optimized sites came about because of users wanting the content to be easily viewed with their phones and tablets. A site with texts and pictures that have to be zoomed, read and recognized can cause a lot of frustration on the part of the users.
In order to address this, many websites today are the following templates that have a scaling format. It immediately adjusts the page depending on what device the site is viewed from.
The benefits of a mobile-friendly website
We are starting to see the evolution of the internet. What was once the dominion of personal computers has now been transferred to mobile. We are seeing more and more mobile phones capable of doing tasks and processes that the computers of yesterday could only hope to do. It is, therefore, in the interests of websites to begin redesigning their pages to be more accommodating for mobile.
There are a lot of benefits for a site to being more mobile-friendly. For one thing, it improves the user experience. This means that all the tasks that we normally used to do on our computers and laptops can now be accomplished using mobile. These tasks include reading and responding to emails, watching videos, and general web surfing. And because mobile is a lot more portable than computers and laptops, site information is readily available wherever.
A mobile-friendly site also translates to more time users are spending on the website. As mentioned earlier, mobile phones and tablets being portable is its greatest strength. On computers, you have a limited time to spend browsing the net. But with phones and tablets, you can stay connected no matter where you are.
A mobile-friendly site also has faster load speeds than ones that are not. Because of how the code is structured for a mobile-optimized website, the page loads faster. Speed is also very crucial. Studies have shown that mobile users will abandon a site if it loads way too long.
Because SEO is very much intertwined with Google, sites that are mobile-optimized may see an increase in search engine rankings. Google has expressed its desire to deliver more mobile-friendly content to users. It might seem like another chore for web developers and business owners to do, but in the end, they will benefit from the switch.
When it comes to competition, it’s no surprise that mobile-friendly sites fare better than those that are not. Their content loads faster, and they are convenient and easy to view. Out of the 200 top-ranked retailers, around 70 didn’t have a mobile-optimized site. This means if you haven’t decided to redesign your website, you are falling behind from your competition. I recommend giving your competitor’s site a visit to see what they’ve come up with. This will give you a good idea of what to do.
Simple ways to make any site more mobile-friendly:
Use a responsive theme
If you are looking for a quick fix, maybe consider adjusting the theme of your website. For major sites with high traffic, this might not be the best option. But for low traffic sites, using a different but more responsive theme is a cost-effective and easy way to turn the site more mobile-friendly.
If your site is hosted by WordPress, then changing the theme is going to be simple. Go to your WordPress dashboard, and under the ‘Appearance’ tab, click on ‘Themes’ then select ‘Install themes.’ You can put in ‘responsive’ in the search bar and hit search.
This will bring all available themes that are responsive to the database of WordPress. The trend for sites to be more mobile-friendly has allowed web developers to create more responsive themes which have the consequence of more options for people to choose from.
Before putting your site back live, you have to remember to test the new theme to make sure that everything is working as it should be. Test it on both computers, mobile, and devices, so you know the new theme is responsive.
Simplify the menus
With mobile, you don’t have that much space to put in all the different tabs and features of your site. For mobile, what you want is a simple menu with only the important options for users to choose from. A simplified site should be top of mind when redesigning your website to be mobile optimized.
The worst you can subject your users is to let them scroll endlessly on their phones, trying to find the option they are looking for. On a computer screen with a lot more space, that might not be too much of a problem. But on the smaller screen of a phone or tablet, it can be frustrating.
Another thing you want to avoid is for users having to zoom into the page so that they can read the texts or pictures. If your site is the same on a desktop as it is on mobile, it will impact your conversions negatively.
Also, keep in mind the sidebars are pretty much useless on mobile. It’ll get pushed down to the bottom of the page and is hardly ever used by mobile users. Unless you can create an inventive way to incorporate sidebars on the mobile version of your site, I suggest you ditch it altogether.
Keep forms short
Think of the forms you have on your site. If you are asking a lot of information from your visitors, that won’t be too much trouble on a desktop computer. But on a mobile device, that won’t be the best approach.
What you want is to do is to change the design of the form and keep it short and simple. Asses your forms and decide if you really need each line.
For example, if you’re trying to get people to sign up for your email list, there’s the need for you to get their home address and phone numbers. Their email address and the name are more than enough.
For those forms where conversion is the primary goal, you shouldn’t be asking irrelevant questions to users like what their favorite color is. Just get their billing information and shipping address, and that’s it.
An arduously long and complicated checkout is one reason why people abandon their shopping carts. So if you want to stop customers from giving up and abandoning their carts, change the design of your site and keep your forms short.
Display your call to action clearly
CTAs or call to action is content that’s used to motivate users, listeners, and viewers to follow a directive or instruction, whether it is to click through a link or sign up to a mailing list.
In your brand new mobile-optimized website, your call-to-action should be visible and clearly seen on the screen. And when it comes to mobile with their limited screen space, cramming in more than one CTA is going to be a little overwhelming.
So think about what you want to achieve for your landing page. Do you want to get more downloads? New subscribers? Motivate visitors to make a purchase? Or increase your social media presence?
Your CTA should be aligned with your goal. By focusing the attention on your call-to-action buttons, it will give you the edge over your competitors since about 50% of sites have CTA buttons that usually take users 3 to 5 seconds to identify.
In the competitive space of e-commerce, that is far too long. Your call-to-action button should be immediately apparent and easy to spot.
Include a search bar
This goes back to the idea of having a simplified menu option. Right now, most standard websites have more than 20 different options.
It might seem like a daunting task to simplify all these options and make it fit on one page. But it can be done by including a search function on the mobile version of your site.
By encouraging visitors to use the search function when looking up specific options, you are helping to simplify your landing page and limit the available options that users will have to browse through.
Remember, too many options will only confuse users and reduce your conversions. So consider including a search function on your site to make it easier for users to find exactly what they’re looking for.
Customer service should be accessible
No matter how much effort you put into redesigning your site into one that is mobile optimized, people will always have issues. There’s no need to fret. This is all part of running a website. The critical thing to remember is to be able to offer quick and effective customer assistance for our mobile visitors.
This means your customer support information should be clearly visible on the mobile version of your site.
Offer your email address, phone number, social media accounts, and chat support options. Anything that can help a user navigate the site or find what they’re looking for should be evident on mobile.
It can be very frustrating on the part of site owners to have to revamp their site, which they’ve spent a tone of time, effort, and money on. But the internet space continues to evolve in ways that are very hard to predict. Being flexible is a primary key in making sure businesses maintain their lead against their competitors.
There are a lot of ways one can optimize their site for mobile use. You can completely start from scratch and build up from there or you can take small and simple steps. You can go for a design that’s sleek and ultra-trendy or stick with something simple yet effective. As long as you make your site more mobile-friendly, you’re going in the right direction.