59% of the world's web traffic came from mobile phones in the first three months of 2022.
What does this mean? Phones have taken over when it comes to online browsing and, more often than not, people view your business through a phone screen. Now, this creates a big problem if you don’t have a mobile-friendly website. Desktop computers, laptops and tablets are ten times bigger than phone screens, so things are going to look very different when the screen shrinks dramatically… and probably not for the better.
Having a mobile-friendly website makes sure that regardless of the screen size, it still looks professional, is easy to use and doesn’t negatively impact your business’ image.
If you’re building mobile-first, the good news is you don’t have to start from scratch: there are a whole host of mobile-friendly templates out there on sites like Squarespace, Wix or even Canva. Or, if your website’s already up and running, use Google’s free Mobile-Friendly Test to see which areas need work.
Either way, there are a few general rules to follow if you’re looking to make your website mobile-friendly.
This doesn’t mean you’ve got to offer less information, products or services; it just means your web design should be cleverly organised to show less initially. Try stripping back your landing page by sharing top-line information and putting the rest behind collapsible sections and hyperlinks. The trick is to not overwhelm the user at first glance, and to keep things clear and concise.
Make sure any text you do keep really has a purpose and is big enough to be easily readable on a phone screen.
Page loading time is everything as smartphones have made instant access to information the norm. A high bounce rate (the number of people who enter then leave the site instead of reading on) is directly linked to page load time – meaning that rather than waiting for something to load, a user will leave to find one that delivers the information faster. Keep in mind that too many images, videos or interactive elements on a page can increase the load time, which is why rule #1 is so important.
Speed can even affect how your website fairs on search engines too, since Google prioritises websites that load quickly. So, a slow load speed won’t only turn away customers, it could also hold you back from appearing to new customers. There are some smart ways to lighten the load, like compressing all images (you can use free platforms like Kraken.io to do this) and hosting videos on third-party sites, such as YouTube.
Ask people in your network (the more the better) to test your website’s speed (from both computers and phones), help you spot any glitches and report back on the overall user experience. Make sure the important parts of your site, like the purchase process, work seamlessly before launch, so you don’t lose any business due to errors. Show equal attention to every page, as bugs, typos and untested links could threaten your business’ legitimacy in the eyes of potential customers, sending them straight to your competitors instead.
Adopt a mobile-first approach to every new piece of content you create. This means establishing a process where, for everything that goes live on your site, you always think mobile-first. The mobile-viewing experience needs to be something you think about right from the start, and not an afterthought.
To maintain a professional feel, your website’s got to be seamless, regardless of where a customer browses from. After all, there’s no point investing time and energy into developing a fantastic website that simply doesn’t work for anyone viewing from a phone.
If you’re ready to take your online business a step, check out our five quick ways to increase traffic to your website.