I’ve just been searching online for some car accessories, a seat tidy to fit over the back of the front seats to be more precise, and I’m honestly quite amazed at how many websites are not geared up for mobile ‘surfers’!
Let me ask this question, is your website ‘mobile friendly’?
If you’re reading this as a member of the Partnership to Success course then there’s a good chance you already are because most of us use OptimizePress.
OptimizePress takes care of the Mobile Friendly Website side of things for us but even then there are atill some things we can do to enhance your visitors ‘mobile viewing’ experience.
Here’s my 5 Tips:
1. What do you want your visitor to do?
If the main aim of your site is to get your visitor to make that all important ‘Click’ then think about leading with that ‘Call to Action’.
Make sure that your ‘Checkout’ or ‘Add to Cart’ is displayed below the product photo and before any long chunks of text, don’t let that customer who is ready to ‘click’ getaway!
If you have more of an informational website then it’s good practice to try and keep the paragraph sizes as manageable as possible. A bunch of text which looks good on your monitor can look very different on someones mobile phone and doesn’t neccessarily make for a Mobile Friendly Website!
2. Check your Theme settings!
Sounds obvious but missing a setting with your WordPress (or other Content Manager) theme can have a big effect on how your ‘Mobile Friendly Website’ is viewed!
This is especially important with your mobile settings. Some themes manage this automatically for you but if you’re not sure then it’s worth checking out your theme user guide to see what the deal is.
Basically, if they give an option to ‘optimize for mobile’ or similar, then select this option.
Just don’t forget to ‘test’ afterwards (see Tip 5).
3. Make your site Lightning Fast…
As mobile internet speeds increase and more and more people get 4G (I’m sure someone was talking about 5G the other day as well?) then this next tip might not be as important.
However, the way I see it is there’s always going to be someone who doesn’t haven’t superfast internet access and unless you help them out, they might not read your article, join your list or buy from you!
Bottom line, you want a Mobile Friendly Website for everyone…
What we can do is make sure that we keep our pages and posts as small as possible in terms of bytes!
And to do this we need to be carefull with the size and qauntity of our images.
It’s great to have some images to break up the text for our readers but we need to balance this with having a page or post that loads quickly.
Simply put, if your page is too slow to load then you’re relying on the paitence of your visitor, good luck with that one!
As a personal guide, I aim to have no more than 4 images in a 1000 (ish) word article.
You can go over or under this guide of course but it’s just something to be aware of.
So what about the size of your images?
Personally I like to take the guessing game out of all this and buy good quality, web friendly images from 123RF.
What I would say is find the site that is right for you but just make sure it’s as easy to use and as cost effective as 123RF!
For instance, I need a ‘Featured Image’ for this post (Mobile Friendly Website).
Once I’ve logged into my account with 123RF, done a search for an image to match the post topic, in this case ‘MOBILE PHONE FRIENDLY’, then I simply click on the image that I want to use.
I’m then greeted with the following screen:
If you click on the image, you can see in more detail what selections are available but basically I just spend the 1 Credit (short arms, deep pockets!) which also happens to be a perfect size for general web use.
I can guarantee that if you do the same, and choose a small (450 x 300 pixel) image of around 72dpi then it will load quickly and this will help with getting a website which is mobile friendly.
If you don’t want to use this service and have your own photos then software like Photoshop (or similar) can do this for you.
Just head for the ‘Web Optimized’ option!
4. Get Family and Friends involved!
You don’t have to do this all the time but it certainly doesn’t hurt to ask the wife to look at one of your pages on her phone, get the kids involved with their new ‘tablet’ and even ask grandparents to see what they think!
- How easy did they find it to navigate around your site?
- What did your page look like on their device?
- Was it easy to read, do the images load quickly, is there enough white space on the page to give their eyes some relief?
Feedback is good, providing it’s constructive! If someone just says your page looks rubbish (worst case here of course!) then ask them why, might be a simple fix!
Speaking of navigation, did they find that they had too much choice? You might want to consider minimising the navagation a bit! A Mobile Friendly Website needs to fully consider the users site experience.
5. Test everything!
This might seem a bit obvious but how many of us forget to test our site, how do we truely know that we have a Mobile Friendly Website?
Especially important when considering mobile devices, we need to make sure that what looks good on the large computer monitor is also acceptable on a mobile phone and some device inbetween, think iPad or equivelant!
Of course, we are never going to be able to own all the devices that our site could be viewed on but thankfully their are some great websites out there which can emulate this for us!
This is my favourites, http://quirktools.com/screenfly/
You simply enter your website details:
And then select which device you want to choose to ‘view’ your site on!
You then just need to click on the icons above the image, select a device model and you’ll see the screen automatically resize to what should be seen on that device.
It’s not going to be perfect on all devices but this tool acts as a good confidence checking tool, it’s helped me spot some problems with text paragraph size and videos not being optimized properly, and it is quick, easy and FREE to use!
Not much free these days, get it while you can http://quirktools.com/screenfly/
Now, I’m still getting to grips with the mobile internet world so would love to hear from anyone else who’s got some other great tips to share!
How far to you go to ensure that your content is visable on other platforms and devices?
Feel free to leave any comments below.