People are more connected to the web than ever before. In the year 2000 there were approximately 17 million websites on the net. Today there are over 1 billion websites up and counting. The way people access the internet has changed the landscape of the web. With billions people using mobile phones to connect it’s important to have a mobile friendly website.
Conventionally when we think of someone sitting on the computer to browse the internet. But more and more people are using their cell phones or tablets to get online. Many people’s first experience with the internet are now through mobile phones. This is a trend that is not going away. It’s clear that mobile friendly websites are going to increase exponentially in the future. Read on to find out why you should optimize your site and some ways that you can do it.
According to the office of national statistics:
“Access to the Internet using a mobile phone more than doubled between 2010 and 2013, from 24% to 53%… In 2013, 72% of all adults bought goods or services online, up from 53% in 2008”
Things are changing quickly and businesses all over the world have the choice to adapt or risk losing out to competitors. With mobile devices replacing PC’s as the preferred method to shop and do business online, not having a website that is optimized for mobile devices is a mistake. Maybe you could get away with it a few years ago, but not anymore. This is why we this list of 7 good reasons to have a mobile friendly website.
According to comscore, a global leader in digital measurement and analytics, 55% of all online shopping was done on a mobile device. Most of that mobile traffic was done on smartphones, while the remaining 11% was from a tablet.
If you are selling anything online, especially retail you will lose out on a large chunk of your demographic if you don’t have a site that looks good on mobile. If you are trying promote services or sell anything online, you need to make sure your site adapts to the screens of tablets and smartphones. If you are a WordPress user, using a responsive WordPress theme is the best way to do this.
Improve User Experience
Mobile websites are specifically constructed to look and perform well on handheld devices. They offer the highest quality user experience to visitors. Having efficient navigation control and integrating mobile features like click to call are important. A mobile friendly website not only makes it easy for customers to get in touch with you, it enables them to access you content without having to zoom in our out.
Better Search Engine Rankings
Recently Google announced that the latest version of their search algorithm strongly supported sites optimized for mobile traffic. This update to their web crawler was announced through Webmaster Tools.
With Google’s latest Panda update, it’s obvious that mobile friendly websites get a boost to their mobile search rankings. This makes it difficult for sites that aren’t optimized to be found by mobile users. Without a design that accommodates to mobile devices, people are less likely to visit your website.
It makes sense that Google would want to give higher priority to mobile ready websites. With 25% of every search happening on mobile devices, mobile-first sites are in high demand. This is Google’s way of encouraging business to optimize their web presence for mobile users. Don’t get left behind – keep reading for more reasons to optimize your website for mobile devices.
Reduce Load Time
Trying to browse a desktop site on a mobile device can be problematic. The site may load too slow or not at all. If it does load there will be many design issues that get in the way. This happens because the code isn’t designed to work with mobile devices.
If a site is optimized for a mobile browser, the site is built to display in the proper dimensions. For this reason alone it takes lesser time to load compared to a site made for desktops.
When someone accesses a desktop site on a mobile device, it can be a frustrating experience. This can cause a visitor to immediately leave, or bounce from your site quickly. If browsing is enjoyable and efficient – users will be more inclined to stay. This means you need to make it easy to navigate your website and make content easy to find. Minding this can lower your bounce rate and increase your conversion rate.
Increase Sales and Conversions
Generally speaking, the larger your audience, the better your chances of a higher conversion rate. Optimizing the design for mobile devices will help you appeal to a wider audience of customers. Providing a positive user experience makes it easier for people to use your services or buy your products. There are many WordPress plugins that can help you reach more customers and increase conversion rates.
If your site isn’t ready for mobile browsing, visitors will simply leave your site for one that is. This goes the other way to, you may win over visitors because you have a mobile friendly website. Keeping your site optimized for mobile devices will leave you in a better position than your competitors, especially if there are many mobile first features.
Solutions to make your WordPress Website Mobile Friendly
Now that you understand why it is important to have a mobile friendly website, we can look at the different ways to optimize your WordPress site for mobile users. There are lots of plugins and methods available to help you do this.
Make your theme mobile friendly
If you like the theme you are using, there is an easy way to make it mobile friendly. Use CSS media queries is one quick way to do this. This can be a tough sometimes because you will have to make sure every design element on your site is optimized.
Upgrade to a Responsive Theme
All the best premium WordPress themes are responsive, which means they are optimized mobile web browsers as well as desktop browsers. Getting a responsive theme is the best way to do this if you don’t want to deal with any coding. All you need to do is pick a free or premium WordPress theme and activate it. This will automatically make your site optimized for mobile browsing.
Add mobile-first features
People browse the web on mobile devices differently than on desktop computers. In general mobile users are on-the-go. Many times a successful mobile site will have a short bounce rate because visitors find the information they need and leave.
Consider someone looking for takeout. Someone on a desktop may be looking for a number of details about the restaurant they are interested in. Photos, menus, photo galleries and more are all things a good desktop site will offer. But a mobile user may just be looking for important info like the place, contact info and a menu.
While on mobile devices, people usually have a limited amount of time to find the information they need. This is why it’s a good idea to make things accessible.
One feature that is helpful in this situation is a click to call button. Many modern mobile browsers will automatically convert phone numbers into links, but it’s a good idea to do this yourself. Use a plugin or add in the code directly.
Another good example of a mobile first feature for online shops is infinite scrolling. With this feature users won’t have to go to new pages to load more products. This is a very easy way to make your products more accessible.
Use a WordPress Plugin
There are plenty of WordPress plugins that can help you make your site offer a better experience to mobile users. You can even display a separate theme for mobile users. These type of plugins optimize your site for all types of mobile devices. They range from page builders to eCommerce plugins. Checkout Visual Composer to build responsive web pages that look good on desktop or mobile.
There are many reasons why you need to have a mobile version of your website. Mobile browsers are the preferred method of browsing for many people these days. This is why it’s crucial to make your website accessible and provide a good user experience.
When you are making a mobile site keep a few things in mind.
- Mobile users want to save time
- Mobile browsers have standard dimensions
Since people who use mobile devices are usually on the go you want your site to load fast. This means you have to make sure the text, page size and other elements load quickly. Also make sure that users can navigate your site quickly and easily. The preferred method is a hidden hamburger menu. Superfly is a great plugin for building responsive nav menus.
Text size is another issue that often crops up for mobile users. Take a minimal approach with your design and make sure you can easily view your site. Don’t try to cram tons of information on one page.
If you aren’t making your WordPress website responsive and considering mobile UX, than you are missing out bigtime. Anyone that wants to have a presence on the internet should make changes to optimize their site for mobile devices.