Mobile devices are the most popular browsing device in the US. Over 50% of all internet users use them as their primary source of information online. This is why mobile-friendly website design is essential.
Mobile visitors will have an easy time navigating through your content while boosting your SEO rankings if you create your site with mobile devices in mind!
In this post, you will learn the factors you must look into when designing a mobile-friendly website. Some of the suggestions will require professional web design services, but you can implement most of them on your own.
1. Make it Responsive
Not all devices are created equal; that’s why you want your site to be accessible across various devices.
Responsive web design makes web pages display properly when viewed on different devices.
With this technique, the layout of your web page will automatically adjust based on the size of the viewing screen.
For WordPress users, most themes nowadays allow you to build a responsive website. Your site should adjust to the visitor’s mobile screen size automatically to maximize their viewing pleasure.
You may need to customize the look and feel of your responsive site to achieve your desired look. However, the work for you is done as far as responsiveness is concerned.
To ensure that your site is truly responsive, go to Google Mobile-Friendly Test and enter your site’s URL.
2. Ensure it Loads Fast
If you want to have an excellent mobile experience, make sure your website loads quickly. Google gives higher rankings on search results for faster loading websites. Now that Core Web Vitals (CWV) are a ranking factor, this is especially true (more about this later).
To make sure your website is loading quickly, use a content delivery network (CDN) for faster site speed. It refers to a group of servers that load the site whenever a visitor goes to it. Instead of loading the website from the web host, CDN will load it from the server nearest to the visitors. Loading from local servers results in faster loading speed.
Cloudflare is a free CDN. You can use it to distribute the delivery of your site to visitors from different parts of the world.
If you want to see how fast your website loads on a specific mobile device, use Google’s PageSpeed Insights Tool.
It shows you how fast the mobile and desktop versions of your site load. It also provides suggestions on making it load more quickly.
More importantly, it shows you the Core Web Vitals of your website to help you monitor its performance. By taking action on the insights provided by the tool, you can raise your CWV scores. Your audience will have a much better user experience of your mobile-friendly website.
3. Utilize Material Design
Material Design is Google’s material philosophy applied to all of their products, including Android. It combines the principles of good product design with the innovation and possibility of technology and science.
Utilizing Material Design will provide your website with a clean, modern look that is easy to read and navigate.
Think of Material Design as an ecosystem with an extensive list of rules that suit a specific design situation. This is beneficial for designers looking for more comprehensive use cases for its library of elements so they can create more usable and less-distracting designs for visitors.
In other words, implementing Material Design on your site to the fullest allows you to engage users with your pages, thus preventing them from leaving your site!
Implementing this design type on your site requires coding knowledge, so it’s best to hand this task to an expert.
From there, you can visit the material design website for components to use and resources to follow best practices.
You can create custom material design elements using Polymer.js. You won’t have to worry about cross-browser compatibility, and the elements will automatically adjust to different screen sizes and densities.
4. Make Sure It’s Simple and Easy to Navigate
A simple and easy-to-use navigation menu has a better chance of engaging visitors to your site. Conversely, if your menu is cluttered or hard to navigate, people will leave your website and go elsewhere.
This is where the K.I.S.S. principle (Keep It Simple, Stupid!) comes into play. Only boil down your site to its necessary elements for each page. Having more than enough may overwhelm visitors into leaving your site for good.
To keep your mobile and desktop site designs easy to use, make your navigation consistent.
Visitors may be frustrated if they find your menu on your site’s desktop version but not the mobile website design.
Also, make mobile searches on your site as intuitive as possible. Visitors will use the search feature to find what they’re looking for.
So aside from making it visible for people to see, describe the things they can search from. Airbnb implements this principle to a significant effect on their site.
Finally, consider adding a footer section for your mobile site design.
When viewed on a mobile phone, the vertical layout of your site encourages users to scroll the page. This behavior results in more visitors landing at the bottom of your mobile site.
Take advantage of this prime real estate by adding elements you wouldn’t usually include on your navigation menu. Add a short description of your site, links to your social media profiles, or your latest blog posts.
5. Include Only Easy-to-Read Text
Mobile-friendly web design involves making your text easily readable. Users lose interest when the text on your website is too small for them to read comfortably.
Ideally, the text size should be equal to or more than 16px. In some cases, 18px may work better. But it’s more than just the size of the text that pertains to readability.
You also need to consider the line height, content width, approximate characters per line, and more.
To help you make the text on your website much easier to read, use the Golden Ratio Typography Calculator.
Choose the font of your website and enter either the font size or content width. The calculator will then provide you with the figures you must use for other factors about typography. It also shows you how the text looks when using these settings.
You don’t have to follow the suggestions of the calculator. Use them as groundwork to improve your site’s readability across all platforms.
6. Use Easy-to-Click Links
Your site pages must serve a purpose — most of which involves clicking on a button. But for visitors to complete your desired action, they must see where that button is.
Like your site’s typography, your call to action (CTA) should be large enough and have contrasting colors from your site.
Regarding colors, use Paletton for ideas about which colors to use to help your CTAs pop from the screen.
7. Have it be Free of Pop-Ups
Pop-ups are essential marketing tools to generate leads. However, they are a nuisance to mobile users and search engines.
One option: keep pop-ups on in the desktop version of your website but disable them on its mobile version.
If you insist on keeping these forms on your mobile-friendly site, you can format them in line with the content. Properly formatted, they show as part of the content, thus not disrupting the UX on your website.
The best way to design a website optimized for mobile viewing is by providing your users with an easy-to-navigate experience.
Keep them engaged and anticipate any of the possible obstacles they may run into to avoid complications or confusion.
If you’re looking at how to do this yourself but are unsure where to start, contact us. We can help you figure out how to improve your website to provide a better browsing experience for smartphone users.
What steps have you taken towards designing an optimal user experience? Let us know!