Mobile web design
What it really means, and why it matters to your website
Mobile web design: why does it matter?
According to Google, over 65% of website traffic is from a mobile device, either a smartphone or tablet. And that number is only increasing.
While it varies by industry, it's certain that a substantial number of your website visitors are using a mobile device, and they'll quickly give up on you if your site doesn't load quickly or look right. In fact Google estimates that 54% of mobile visitors will simply leave your site if the page doesn't load within 3 seconds.
Your website on a small screen
Obviously the key difference with a mobile user is the smaller screen. And what this really means is less patience. Mobile users (and arguably all users) want to get straight to the point. This means prioritising 'calls to action' in the first part of the screen that users see, making them clear and easy to click. You can't waste space on woolly content that doesn't immediately help the user. And it should be really easy to jump to the menu, or click your logo to get to the home page.
Mobile web browsing is slower
Although they may be on a faster wifi network at home or at work, your mobile users are also likely to be out and about. Their signal may not be great, and their data connection is likely to be much slower on a mobile device.
Your website may look great and load quickly on your office computer, but take a long time to load on that old iPhone when your customer is sitting at the bus stop. Again, don't waste time on content they don't need. In short: get to the point. Why are your visitors on the website? Give them the information or actions they need as quickly as possible.
Google search engine positions
Google themselves are increasingly trying to improve their users mobile experience by encouraging businesses to do better, and incorporating a website's mobile experience into their search algorithms.
Put simply, if your competitor's website loads more quickly on a mobile than yours (assuming all other factors are equal), then they are likely to appear higher than you for the same search term.
Check your website's mobile friendliness with Google's site test.
Mobile design helps all websites
An increased focus on mobile users has helped web design in general. Even on a desktop computer, mobile friendly features appear. The need for better mobile experiences has influenced elements like the three line 'burger menu', leaving plenty of space around clickable items, and more succinct code.
Responsive design on websites
Websites built at Bluelinemedia all utilise 'responsive design' to work across mobile devices. This is the term for a website that automatically changes size and shape based on your particular screen. Images and text are scaled to work best on your screen, and elements can even be removed entirely on some devices. For example we'll often hide a slideshow on a mobile where the space is more limited, or switch a wide text menu to the three line 'burger' version.