Digital Geeks' Blog: Our Thoughts

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How to retain 80% more visitors by making your website mobile-friendly

14/08/2015
Joanna
Joanna

The number of mobile users browsing the internet is increasing, and it is estimated that over 80% of people now use a mobile phone for accessing their emails, working remotely and searching online. Almost 50% of internet users regularly use a tablet or other mobile device to search the web. This means that if your website isn’t user friendly for these visitors, the content of your site will lose its value, and you’ll be penalised in Google’s mobile search results.

Why’s there the need to make changes to your site?

The mobile visitor experience will have will be extremely different than if they were accessing your site through a desktop. Without any optimisation, your site will appear in its standard desktop form, which will be difficult to see, most likely with text and other elements too small to read or interact with. In a lot of cases, this will drive visitors directly off of your site. Making changes to your website will increase how user-friendly it is and improve visitor retention.

Your layout should be different

Since viewing the desktop version of your site isn’t practical for mobile visitors, you should keep the layout simple. Use as few pages as possible to convey your key services and brand and make the key elements appear underneath each other as blocks. Similarly, create a menu structure that gives the clearest options and allows easy navigation. 

Be consistent with your design

Although your layout will need to be dramatically different from your desktop site, it’s important to maintain consistent branding to make your brand recognisable across all different platforms. Stick to the same colour palette and use your logo across the site to emphasize this.

Keep your content concise

There’s nothing more annoying than pressing the wrong link accidentally on a site using your mobile and trying to navigate your way back. Incorporating white space is an effective way to break up elements of your site and give a cleaner, less-cluttered look. Use dropdown menus, checklists and pre-populated fields to make it easier to type in data and browse a site without the inconvenience of trying to select specific options within a crowded body of text.

Things to avoid

There are some things that just don’t work for mobile and should be avoided. For example, not all phones can use Flash or Java, so these elements will be pointless if your audience cannot access them. Opening links in a new tab should also be avoided, since this makes it more difficult to go back to the previous page and also causes slower load times, which decreases the overall user-experience.

Keep your visitors happy

Whether it’s simplifying your content and structure, or providing a link to view the website as the standard desktop if required, giving your visitor clear options is the most effective way to increase your visitor retention.
Utilising a website that is built using a responsive theme will ensure your site scales to whatever browser is being used.

For advice to make your website mobile-friendly, get in touch with the Geeks team today on 0845 643 6229.

 

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