The case for mobile optimization is clear. Over half of all internet traffic is mobile. As early as 2012, a Google Survey found that 61 percent of users would leave a site if it wasn’t mobile friendly, and early last year Google announced it would further lower the rank of sites that were not optimized for mobile devices.
If you are not sure whether your blog is mobile ready, use Google’s mobile friendly testing tool to check. It will evaluate your site for mobile friendliness and, if it is not mobile ready, it will list the changes that need to be made. Of course, not all mobile optimization is equal. More than just scaling down your landing page for smaller screens, you want to give your blog readers the same functionality they have on their desktop, but also acknowledge the differences in the way people use the web on mobile devices. Here is how to tailor your blog to take advantage of mobile use:
Use Responsive Design
This is an absolute must. Responsive design detects the screen size of your visitor’s device and adjusts the layout, images and font sizes. Research has shown that consumers constantly switch between devices and expect a seamless web experience across all platforms. A responsively designed website is usually set to scale between a desktop monitor, laptop, tablet and mobile phone. Rather than creating a separate mobile site geared toward one type of mobile screen, responsive design accounts for variations in size and orientation. A user accessing your site from a 12.9-inch iPad Pro would need a different page configuration than a user with the new 4-inch Apple iPhone SE. For bloggers using WordPress, there are many responsive themes including the premium themes Paperbag from CSSIgniter and Focus from Studio Press, or the free Bento theme from Satori Studio. Or, you can simply hire someone like me to take care of that! Check my web design services here!
Understand How People Use Internet on Mobile Devices
Having a responsive design is a good start, but not enough to give your mobile readers an optimal experience. People use the internet differently from their mobile devices than they do from a desktop or laptop. Visual media is accessed at a much higher rate on mobile; as a result, to capture mobile users, you need to include photos or short videos in your feed. Be mindful of what types of visual media you are including. High-resolution images are required for the retina-quality screens on the latest iOS devices. For videos, embed YouTube videos, which are already coded to be responsive and will resize automatically.
Size for Mobile Use
Another way to set up your responsive design for success is to make sure your font and button sizes are big enough for even the smallest mobile devices. Fonts should be at least 14 point for easy reading. Apple recommends buttons be at least 44px by 44px for mobile use, while Nokia suggests 48px by 48px. Be sure to leave enough space between buttons to make them easily pressable. There is nothing more frustrating for mobile users than trying to touch a button or link and being redirected to an adjacent button. Likewise, if you need to include simple text links in your copy, leave plenty of words between each link to avoid misdirection.