A mobile-friendly website is designed to work in exactly the same way across all different devices so that the users viewing experience is not compromised simply because they are looking at content on their smartphone compared to a desktop computer.
Here are some of the primary reasons why you need to ensure that your website is mobile-friendly, including a look at how Google ranks websites, why security features are important, plus some tips on ways to improve user’s browsing experience.
All features enabled
If your website has drop-down menus and images you want to make sure that all of those useful navigational features and aesthetic enhancements are still the same when someone loads your website page on their mobile device.
When you incorporate a mobile-friendly design into your website it will mean that nothing changes and none of the navigational features will be disabled or unusable.
Images automatically display smaller and you are not reliant on a mobile operating system to achieve full functionality when you use a mobile-friendly design.
Mobile devices are now the preferred option
How most of us view content online has evolved and it is now estimated that more than half of the web traffic at any one time is content being viewed on a mobile device.
A high percentage of mobile users will not use a website that is poorly designed and does not give them a good and easy viewing experience. If you are reaching out to customers or taking orders via your website it is clear that you could be missing out on valuable sales if your website is not mobile-friendly.
The viewing figures tell you that you have to adapt to smartphone usage if you want to gain and maintain a competitive edge so aim to find a website designer that can give you what you want.
The need for speed
It is not just a case of making your website mobile-friendly and enabling all the usual features, you also need to ensure that your site offers a fast response rate.
Patience is not a virtue that many internet users possess it is estimated that approximately 90% of users won’t hang around for long on a website if it doesn’t load quickly enough or lets them navigate quickly.
Even if you have a customer that likes your business and wants what you have to offer, the vast majority of internet users won’t be that loyal if your website isn’t up to speed.
Security is important
Another key feature that really matters when it comes to mobile-friendly design is the need to offer a secure environment.
The dominant search engine, Google, has now started a system of labeling non-secure sites, which is any website that does not have an HTTPS or an SSL certificate.
Your website needs to be secured so that it appears in the search bar with a green locked symbol, rather than a “not secure” warning appearing in its place.
A large number of users are security savvy and if you don’t offer the comfort of a green lock symbol you might lose customers because they are fearful that your website is not secure.
It is clear that with a growing number of mobile users accessing the internet and a shrinking desktop audience there is a need to go beyond just ensuring that you have a responsive design.
It is worth remembering that a responsive website merely replicates the desktop version of your website in miniature, but that doesn’t always look that great when pictures and features are shrunken.
Consider adopting a mobile-first approach to your design and you will create a website that looks great on a smartphone but also works just as well on a desktop screen.
Improve your SEO ranking
Ever since Google publicly aired its decision to rank how mobile-friendly a website was a few years ago, the impetus has increased on ensuring that your website scores well when it comes to SEO.
Knowing that Google ranks mobile-friendly websites higher in search results than those that are not should be all the incentive you need to take action and get your website design plans to reflect this fact.
Don’t create a separate website
Although Google rankings should have an influence on your website design and content it is not generally considered a good idea to create a separate mobile-friendly website.
The problem with this strategy is that you will be creating duplicated content across two different sites, and this is something that Google could penalize you for in their rankings.
Use critical code
Another important issue to consider is the need to include a viewport meta tag.
In simple terms, the viewport is a piece of coding that helps a browser to scale and size your content. Using this meta tag is considered essential when you are building a mobile-friendly website and without this coding, it is likely that your content will not be viewed in the best way.
Increase your customer base
Alongside these fundamental design points that you need to consider it also pays to think about the reasons why you are implementing these design features.
Making your website mobile-friendly will automatically create a much larger potential for increasing your customer base as it allows potential customers to make a general search of your company name without knowing the specific URL.
Being more visible on the internet and easier to find has to be seen as a positive boost for your business.
Conform to modern standards
You will always want people to view your business as relevant and accessible and with a mobile-friendly website, you will able to achieve both those aims and more besides.
Creating and maintaining a website that works well on smartphones and other mobile devices is quickly becoming standard best practice, so you don’t want your business to lag behind the times.
If your website is not mobile-friendly you are limiting your marketing opportunities, which is why it is such a good idea to get with the times and compete on a level playing field by making sure that your content can be viewed by the many who now use their smartphones to access the internet.