Screen size matters: How to optimise for all devices
If statistics by Forrester Research are anything to go by, we’re moving towards a mobile future at an alarming pace. In March 2012, the research body predicted that one billion consumers will own a smartphone by 2016, with 257 million in the US alone. And the statistics for tablet uptake are just as compelling – the report found that 126 million US customers will become tablet converts in the same year.
For business owners, this means that making sure your websites are optimised for mobile devices should play a starring role in your mobile strategy, and the ability to tackle issues such as screen size and performance can determine whether your website sinks or swims. These are our top tips for optimising your website for mobile.
Lighten your load
It’s important to remember that on-the-go mobile customers are short on patience and unlikely to tolerate lengthy wait times. To ensure your website loads quickly, steer clear of heavy graphics, pop-ups Flash and Java-enabled animation. If you indulge in these frills, you risk alienating your mobile user base.
Consider screen size
Mobile and tablet websites should be a pleasure to access and function seamlessly on a smaller screen. Make sure your design is simple and elegant, and arrange data and images vertically so that users don’t have to engage in unnecessary scrolling. It’s also vital you make clever use of white space and favour compact images – save the rich visuals for your primary site.
Edit your content ruthlessly
When it comes to optimising your website for mobile, bombarding your users with content is a common mistake. Combine essential features such as contact details, logos and branding with mobile-friendly versions of your ‘About’ section and core product offers. Remember that simple, concise content will always pack a more powerful punch.
Bigger is better
Mobile customers don’t have the luxury of comfortable desktops, so it’s your job to accommodate them. Eliminate frustration by making sure your buttons are instantly clickable, upsizing your icons and embracing features such as drop-down menus and a zoom function. If you build a website that’s as user-friendly as possible, you’ll spark higher conversion rates and drive sales.
Optimising for mobile might pose a few initial challenges, but putting yourself in the shoes of your mobile customer can earn you big rewards. What are your thoughts on the mobile optimisation process?
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