The Do’s and Don’ts of Mobile-Friendly Websites
Mobile-friendly websites have been growing in importance over the years, most notably in April 2015 with the arrival of ‘mobilegeddon.’ Last month, Google reaffirmed its quest to make optimised websites the norm, as it rolled out more algorithm changes that prioritise brands with a responsive online presence.
As Google clamps down on websites that are lagging behind, it’s becoming imperative for brands to invest in mobile-friendliness if they want to stand a chance in the crowded digital market. So let’s take a look at the do’s and don’ts of a mobile-friendly website:
Do – Think Big
Small screens mean smaller text, links and buttons, which makes it essential to optimise your font and targets for smartphones and tablets. Ideally, you should go for a font size of at least 16 pixels, with adequate spacing between each line to allow for compression on mobile screens.
For buttons and links, remember that visitors to your website will be using their fingers to click on targets. As such, you need to make sure they will be able to tap on the link or section – such as an entry in a form - without pressing another one by mistake. According to Google, these design features should be at least 48 pixels.
Don’t – Pop Up
Pop-ups are a tried-and-tested marketing tool, but they are rapidly falling out of fashion in the mobile-first generation. Large pop-ups can be intrusive and frustrating on a mobile device, putting you at risk of a high bounce rate, along with a potential penalty or ranking drop from Google. Consider alternatives instead, such as banner ads or PPC advertising.
Do – Pick Up the Speed
In this day and age, there’s really no excuse for coal-powered websites that sluggishly load segment by segment. Speed is a key ranking factor for Google, and not just for determining mobile-friendliness.
So whilst that show-stopping, feature-rich website may look fantastic when it eventually loads, you may lose leads and fall down the search engine rabbit hole if you don’t prioritise the user experience.
Don’t – Use Flash
One of the most important no-no’s for mobile devices is Flash content. Whilst this may have been cutting edge technology a decade ago, it’s now a real hindrance for brands wanting to connect with an audience on the move. So if you’re currently using Flash content or you’re considering investing, think again.
As you can see, there are many things to consider when optimising your website for mobile devices. However, the easiest way to assess whether your current website is hitting the mark (or not!) is to run a check with Google’s Search Console, which has a whole section dedicated to the user experience on smartphones and tablets.
Take a look at our previous blog on 8 simple tips for user experience to improve your mobile sites even further.
Want to reassess your online presence, or ensure that your new website hits Google’s targets for mobile-friendliness? The Christian Michaels Agency is here to help. To have a chat about responsive web design, call 0161 266 1040 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We’d love to have a chat about your needs.