More and more people are now using their smartphones and tablets for emailing, browsing webpages, searching for information, signing up for various services, and buying items. So, it is risky for online business owners to put off making their sites mobile friendly.
Site visitors who can’t load your webpages on their mobile devices are likely to leave your website and end up at your competitors’ sites. You are potentially missing out on a valuable consumer segment by only maintaining a desktop-optimized website. On top of improving the user experience of many of your site visitors, a mobile-friendly website makes it easier for mobile shoppers to buy from you and respond to your CTAs.
Here are vital steps to steer you toward growing your business and encouraging sales by catering to the needs of mobile users.
Responsive Website Design
Responsive website design is the most highly recommended way to tap the mobile consumer market. With this approach, your webpage layout basically adjusts to the viewing ecosystem. The webpage elements are sized relatively. Thus, a comparable user experience is achieved for users of both desktops and mobile devices. Leveraging the benefits of CSS3, a responsive website is great for SEO and does not require a mobile URL.
To accomplish this, choose a framework to implement for your responsive site design. An example of such framework is the open-source Bootstrap, which is free and easy to apply.
Mobile-Friendly Webpage Elements
Think easy-to-tap navigation design elements that do not require the user to zoom before tapping the small touchscreen interface. Your website’s menu bars and buttons should be large enough for tapping even with fat fingers. On average, the adult index finger size ranges from 15 to 20 millimeters. In pixels, this range is between 45 and 57. Don’t just perform screen resizing through CSS3; improve user experience by preventing misplaced tapping.
Your website forms should also be designed with the mobile environment in mind. Many people who use mobile devices would balk at the idea of typing a lot of data into online forms through their keyboard-less touchscreens. Don’t annoy your site visitors. Reduce the number of form fields they are supposed to fill out. For instance, since you can readily use GPS, consider pre-populating your location-specific form fields.
Another mobile-friendly website design idea is to use recognizable icons instead of text. For example, display the Twitter logo instead of typing “Twitter.”
Make your website design clean and simple, so it conforms beautifully to mobile viewing. Stick to a single-column layout. Then equip it with a collapsible menu system to streamline navigation. Also, keep your content succinct, because it is difficult to read on the small screen of a mobile device. Minimize non-essential webpage design elements and make an effort to put up concisely written, attention-grabbing text. By doing these, you also speed up your site’s loading time.
A slow-loading website can be a kiss of death for your business. According to a corporate blog post from Mozilla’s Blog of Metrics, 32 percent of consumers will abandon slow-loading webpages between one and five seconds. A whitepaper from TABB Group reported that for a delay of one second in a webpage’s loading time, page views are reduced by 11 percent, customer satisfaction declines by 16 percent, and sales conversions drop by seven percent.
The problem is that the mobile Web is significantly slower than cable-driven and FiOS internet connections. Thus, you need to keep your webpages for mobile viewing spare and to the point.
Rich media is a must, and video should definitely be part of your online marketing routine. The service provider, Invodo, discovered that mobile consumers are three times more likely to play videos than traditional computer users.
Improve the mobile video viewing experience of your site visitors by taking advantage of bandwidth-conserving mobile video players powered by HTML5. Also, be sensible when adding videos so that they don’t bog down your webpages.
Geo-location is most suitable for targeting mobile consumers. You can prompt mobile users with directions to your store’s location, let them confirm in-store availability, and give geographically targeted sales promotions. You can also use geo-location for online shoppers by displaying prices based on their currency.