One of the things we have all learned from a period of sheltering in place is that internet connections are unstable, especially when there is a flood of people online. Our internet connections have failed us at one time or another during this pandemic. If you didn’t experience an unstable connection yourself, chances are that you know someone who did. When that happened, many turned to their cellular service. Given data limits, cellular wasn’t a long-term solution. However, it did make many people even more comfortable using their handheld computer—the smartphone—for business, ecommerce and daily living.
As a business owner, you should be optimizing your website for mobile. Not just creating a mobile-friendly site, but a mobile-optimized one. Here’s why a mobilize-optimized website helps you win.
Content is easier to find
When your website is optimized for smartphones, your content will be easier to find on the phone. Traditionally, websites have been built on menus that link to deeper content. A visitor starts by following a basic top menu navigation and finds content they are looking by clicking to deeper links. On a smartphone, scrollable content is easier to navigate. Endless clicking may lead to use fatigue and may cause a visitor to leave your website. Make content easier to find by making your webpages scrollable.
Webpages are viewable
Undoubtedly, you have had the experience of visiting a website on your mobile device and the page loads in a peculiar way. Menus are vertical when you expect them to be horizontal. Images do not load properly. Or, the font is so small you would have to magnify it ten-fold just to read each word. Clearly, the website was not built for your mobile browser. The simplest way to remedy this issue is to build a website using responsive design. When you do so, your website will be responsive to the browser and screen size that it is displayed in. It will automatically adjust so that the visitor can successfully view your webpages.
Visitors do not have to type much
When it comes to smartphones, we all have fat fingers. We click on things we don’t intend to click on. We text misspelled words. (Auto-correct was created to save us from our fat fingers.) We often cannot even see what we are typing because our on-screen keyboard blocks our view. So, when creating a website that is optimized for mobile, limiting the typing a visitor needs to do creates a better user experience. Using dropdown lists or picklists is one effective way to minimize user typing.
Images are visible
Graphics improve the aesthetics of your website and help you tell your story. When images do not load, it is clear to the visitor that something is missing. Graphics should be optimized for your website. Be cognizant of the placement of images. Balance the mix of graphics and text. Use alt text to tell your story (and optimize for SEO) when your image does not load. Again, responsive design is a great tool for keeping your website images viewable on mobile.
As smartphone utilization has increased, it is more important than ever to be sure your website is optimized for mobile.