Today, we use mobile for web surfing more than laptops or desktops. Mobile web browsing has been growing steadily since 2009, while web traffic from desktops has declined. In 2016, mobile and tablet browsing accounted for 51.3% of web browsing versus 48.7% for desktop.
In 2020, Americans surf for 4 hours on their phones daily. People use their mobile devices for research and buying products or services and entertainment. Mobile website compatibility has become vital for business, and if your website is not mobile-friendly you are missing out.
What is a mobile-friendly website?
Web designers design mobile-friendly websites to work in the same way on different screen sizes and devices. Mobile users are goal-oriented and look for specific information. The website should have the following features –
- Larger easier to read texts
- Mobile-friendly navigation
- Touch-friendly buttons and page elements
- Faster download
Why should my website be mobile-friendly?
Mobile-friendly websites have a higher page per view and lower bounce rate
Excellent mobile user experience is important. If your website should be easy to navigate and loads quickly on mobile devices, your viewers are likely to spend more time on your website. They should be able to view the content without needing to zoom. It is an effective way to ensure visitors spend more time on your website.
Mobile friendliness helps build loyalty
If visitors enjoy their web experience on your site they are likely to return. On the flip side, 62% of users who did not enjoy their web experience are unlikely to purchase or return to the website. A mobile-friendly website helps to gain loyal customers and increase revenue.
Mobile-friendly websites get a better ranking by search engines
In 2016, Google decided to provide one mobile-first index for both desktop and mobile searches. People may look at the same content through different devices. Users should have similar experiences while navigating the website through multiple devices.
Google evaluates web parameters like mobile speed and design elements while ranking a website. Designers should implement responsive designs for sites for a high score on the mobile-first index.
Mobile-friendly websites attract more users
Mobile screens are smaller than desktop screens. Mobile users do not want to scroll horizontally or zoom. Studies show 57% of users will not recommend a poorly designed website. You will lose a customer and any word of mouth publicity and sharing.
Mobile devices are commonly used for researching a product before a purchase
Before making a purchase decision, users compare product features and offer prices online. 69% of mobile users will research products from their mobiles. Consumers today prefer to scroll on the product page.
How Do I Know If My Website Is Mobile-Friendly?
Several companies still don’t pass the basic mobile-friendliness test. Here are six easy tests you can perform to evaluate if your website is mobile-friendly.
Use a desktop web browser
Bring up your website on the browser. With the help of your mouse, reduce the size of the browser till you cannot shrink it further. Examine how the browser looks? Is the content visible, or is the content missing? Is the text jumbled? Is your website is unresponsive?. If any of these are true, your page is not mobile-friendly.
Use mobile-friendly tests –
Google has a website https://search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly to let users verify if the site is mobile–friendly. The page generates test results in seconds. The site informs you if your website is mobile-friendly. It specifies reasons if your website performs poorly on the test. Some of the lead problems include –
- Content wider than screen.
- Links are close to one another.
- Texts were small and unreadable.
- The mobile viewport was not set or the users had to use the horizontal and vertical scroll bars.
Use your mobile phone –
This is quite simple, open your website on the mobile browser. Examine if the content of your website and the navigation menu are visible. Analyze if you need to scroll horizontally to read the text.
Use Chrome Dev Tool –
Chrome DevTools lets you determine if a website is mobile-friendly. You can “inspect” the website by right-clicking on the website. The toggle device toolbar allows you to check if your website is responsive. The DevTools lets users check if the website will load on specific mobile devices.
Check Google PageSpeed Insight –
The result of Google PageSpeed Insight gives you a report if your website loads quickly. The results are important because speed factors in your ranking. The results give you actionable inputs on how to improve your website faster.
Google Search Console –
The Google Search Console will give you feedback about the mobile usability of your website. The search console gives you a detailed report on issues plaguing your website. There are two sections errors (shows pages issues with your website) and valid (shows pages without any problems).
WordPress Plugins to make your website mobile-friendly
WordPress is a free open-source content management system that allows you to host a website. WordPress has handy plugins and template that allows you to customize any website to for your blog, business, or store. Here are the top WordPress plugins to make your website mobile-friendly
WPtouch is a popular plugin for WordPress. The plugin immediately applies the mobile setting to your website. The resultant mobile website will become compatible with mobiles and tablets, without affecting the performance of your desktop website. WPtouch incorporates Google’s recommendations. It helps your website get a higher rank in search results.
JetPacks plugins have modules to improve your website’s marketing, SEO, analytics, and much more. The JetPacks plugin has many features to reduce your dependency on other plugins.
Smush is a WordPress image optimizing plugin that will compress images and load them up faster. It can also compress images previously uploaded on your website.
Google introduced the AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) framework to optimize web pages for mobile devices. The plugin is a popular solution that applies AMP principles to your website. The plugin reformates your website to work on mobile and tablets.
The smaller mobile screen presents navigation challenges for web designers. The WP Mobile Menu plugin is a popular solution. The plugin allows users to add a three-layer mobile menu to any website. You can customize menu items or hide them on load.