Optimising Web Design For Mobile Devices and Platforms.

The rise of mobile platforms has forever changed our nation’s access to the internet. Today, over 207 million U.S. citizens own smartphones, and 45 percent of the population owns a tablet.  This is why it’s imperative you optimise your website for any mobile platform.

These mobile devices account for 51 percent of our daily digital media consumption, and recently surpassed desktops as the leading way we access the internet. Companies looking to maximize their consumer outreach must account for mobile users, or else alienate over half the population. The best way to account for mobile users is by optimizing web design for mobile platforms. User friendly, efficient, streamlined designers are necessary on mobile devices.

Mobile Responsive Websites

The leading way to optimise your web design for mobile is by building a mobile responsive website. Responsive websites automatically change their layout based on device type, but keep the same web address and HTML coding.

It’s worth noting that google has stated mobile responsive websites are the future on mobile platforms.

The two main draws of mobile responsive websites are potentially improved SEO and the potential for better user engagement. Let’s break down SEO and user engagement into their own categories.

Search Engine Optimisation

Mobile responsive websites increase the emphasis you’ll need to put on search engine optimization. The unified URL and HTML code mean that your desktop and mobile SEO will either suffer or prosper together.

Focus on improving your desktop SEO to ensure your website’s mobile version will rank high in mobile search results. Basic SEO practices like link building and keyword optimization will translate to your mobile layout. Google’s fondness of mobile responsive design also gives your responsive website an edge. Mobile responsive websites by default rank higher than traditional mobile websites.

U.K. based footwear retailer, Offspring, saw a 77.59 percent increase in first-page-visibility only three months after launching their mobile responsive website. Offspring can attribute much of this success to the responsive design alone, but a user friendly layout that drives engagement also didn’t hurt.


User Engagement

Google focuses on the end user experience, and mobile responsive websites are user friendly, with some exceptions.

The engagement benefit of a mobile responsive website is that users are able to reach your website from a single URL. The automatic conversion of your desktop layout to mobile ensures that any and all resources are available across devices.

However, this doesn’t mean your web design is fool proof. Some elements that work on a desktop may not translate well to mobile. The three main design issues for mobile are usually text, graphics, and interactive elements. Make sure that text doesn’t overhang or run off the page. Graphics shouldn’t occupy the entire screen, and interactive elements should remain tastefully placed.

Data shows that simple pages result in increased customer engagement, and Google has demonstrated this increases search ranking. Switching to a mobile responsive website is the best way to optimize your web design for mobile devices. Done correctly, the responsive platform helps connect with users and improves SEO rank.

Nick Rojas is a self-taught, serial entrepreneur who’s enjoyed success working with and consulting for startups. Using his journalism training, Nick writes for publications such as Entrepreneur, TechCrunch, and Yahoo. He concentrates on teaching small and medium-sized enterprises how best to manage their social media marketing and define their branding objectives.

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