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How Do I Make My Website Mobile-Friendly?

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8 Guidelines for Mobile Design and User Experience

Did you know that almost 40% of Americans say that they primarily use their smartphone to access the internet? This means that you should create a mobile-friendly website that can be easily used from any handheld device.

It’s not just for user experience and conversions; it’s also for SEO. In March 2020, Google officially switched to “mobile-first indexing,” meaning that algorithms evaluate your mobile site over your desktop site when ranking webpages. Without following mobile design best practices, you’re not giving your site the best chance to be found in search engines.

Keep reading to find out how to make a mobile website and ensure its success.

Use a Responsive Theme

Most of the modern websites you find online today are responsive. This means that they are designed to scale down or up and remain functional when they are accessed on any size laptop, tablet, or smartphone. The website “knows” if it’s viewed from a mobile phone or computer and it automatically adjusts screen size to fit the display.

If you want to be successful online, you should have a responsive website as well. You can work with a professional website developer who can code your website and make it scalable on various devices. If you use WordPress, you can also install a responsive theme right from the start. This will save you tons of time and money and make your website readily accessible to your audience.

Simplify Menus and Features

A large and complex menu displays well on the screen of a laptop or desktop computer. However, it may look crowded and confusing on a 5-inch smartphone screen. Make sure that the mobile version of your website contains a small, simplified menu that’s easy to use and doesn’t require pinpoint control. Some sites opt to display only the essential options such as the About Us page, products and services pages, and a Contact Us page.

Make Buttons Easy to Tap

There is a sweet spot when it comes to button designing. You want the buttons of your website to be large enough to be clicked on using a small screen, but not too large that they take up the entire space available.

On top of that, make sure that there’s also sufficient space between the buttons displayed on your website. People with big fingers and less-than-perfect precision might find it difficult to tap the right button if they’re too close together. Google Search Console’s mobile-friendly check may flag your site when buttons or links are too close together.

Do some user testing to check how buttons display on various screens and how easily different users can use them.

Use Large Fonts

Similar to buttons, you should pay special attention to the fonts displayed on your mobile website. They need to be legible and large enough to be seen by everyone. Remember that some people have difficulties seeing text in close proximity, so many designers choose fonts that are slightly larger than “usual.” There is some debate as to the “ideal” font size, style, and spacing, but 16 pixels is generally regarded as a good size to use. See these resources on responsive website font guidelines and a list of “web-safe” HTML and CSS fonts.

Don’t use Flash Graphics

Flash is a platform for creating vector images and multimedia content. It was quite popular at one time, but now Flash is depreciated and can slow down your website. This platform will eventually disappear in the upcoming years, so make sure that your mobile website doesn’t feature content created in Flash.

Make Your Forms Shorter

Your website will likely display certain types of forms for collecting the data of interested customers. For example, you can have a “Contact Us” form, an “Opt-in” form for creating email lists, etc. Although forms display properly on large screens, they can be problematic on smaller ones, so make sure that you keep them short and to the point.

For example, eliminate redundant or unnecessary text. Your contact form should be as simple as possible, so it can display properly on small screens.

Add a “Back to the Top” Button

On both mobile and desktop sites, it’s become customary to include a button that shoots the user back to the top of the screen. The user can simply press this button after reading an article and be immediately taken to the top of the website. This saves time, effort, and improves the viewing experience of your mobile website.

Create a “Sticky” Header

Another good way you can improve navigation on a mobile website is by adding a sticky header. This is a bar with buttons that are permanently displayed on top of the screen. The user can swipe up or down countless times, and the header will always be visible at the top of the page. This allows your visitors to quickly jump to key pages on your site with minimal effort.


 

When you boil it down, the key to mobile-friendliness is to let users do everything on a mobile device that they can do on desktop. 

If your website is brand new, go for a responsive theme from WordPress right from the start, and make adjustments if necessary. If you already have a website and it’s time for a redesign, work with our professional website design team to make your website more mobile-friendly. Our experienced designers and developers know how to make your website shine on any device and put a big smile on your clients’ faces! 

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