If you want your mobile site to get more attention, this guide can help. Here are some common mistakes with creating mobile websites and how to avoid them.
An estimated 4.32 billion people are active mobile Internet users. So, it’s no wonder that over half of website traffic now comes from mobile devices. Experts also believe these figures will keep rising over the years.
Those statistics highlight the importance and benefits of mobile websites. Thus, if you’re a business owner but don’t have a mobile site yet, it’s time to create one ASAP. The sooner you do, the sooner you can boost your brand’s exposure and online traffic.
Just as crucial, however, is to avoid mistakes with creating mobile websites. Because if you commit them, your site will unlikely rank high on search engine results. That won’t do anything to help your site traffic and will only waste your web design budget.
So, keep reading to discover these design blunders and ways to avoid them.
Creating Separate Mobile Website URLs
Don’t do this if you already have a website that works well on desktops and laptops. It’s a waste of time since you can make your existing site mobile-friendly with the viewport meta tag. Adding this tag lets your site scale correctly to various mobile device screen sizes.
Another reason to avoid this mistake is that it goes against Google’s recommendation.
The tech giant recommends using a responsive web design instead of separate URLs. This practice displays the content of the same URL regardless of the type of device used to access it.
A responsive design also automatically adjusts the page layout based on the device. So whether it’s a desktop, laptop, smartphone, or tablet, the page should scale to fit the screen size.
A responsive business website design can also help increase site traffic. It can do so since search engines, including Google, rank mobile-friendly sites better. The higher your rank, the more people can see you and the likelier they are to click on the result leading to your site.
Too Much Page Content
Yahoo says front-end processes account for 80% of end-user response time. Much of that goes toward downloading page components alone. These include images, videos, scripts, Flash, and stylesheets, to name a few.
Unfortunately, all those components can reduce mobile website loading speed.
If your mobile web pages take over 3 seconds to load, you can lose a lot of visitors. Indeed, 40% of Internet users say they will ditch a site if it doesn’t load within 3 seconds.
So, keep your pages lean by removing unnecessary codes and clutter. Retain only the best images appropriate for your content and remove the rest.
Another technique is to use a sprite sheet if you need multiple images to appear on a single page. It combines several smaller photos, sometimes even an animation, into a single file. Since it’s one file, it can load faster and reduce memory usage.
Uploading RAW Files
Today’s digital cameras often capture and save images in RAW or JPEG format. Since RAW files feature more image data, they can be twice to six times larger than JPEG files. While this means their quality is incredible, their large size can affect site speed.
So, don’t upload RAW files to your mobile site pages; instead, compress them. You can use web design tools to reduce their size without sacrificing too much of their quality. You can convert files to JPEG 2000, JPEG XR, WebP, or AVIF during compression.
Placing Videos Directly on Your Site
Videos are notorious for slowing page speeds on both desktop and mobile websites. The higher their resolution is, the longer their buffering time, too. However, a too-low resolution makes their display quality poor, something most users dislike.
Using a third-party host is one alternative to help with video speed and quality. YouTube and Wistia are two examples of platforms that can host your videos. You can then embed their links on your website.
With this strategy, you can still make your videos play in good quality on your mobile site. However, they won’t significantly affect page speeds since another platform hosts them.
Using Adobe Flash
Adobe Flash is software that creates interactive elements like animation and graphic effects. Unfortunately, no mobile device supports its use.
If you must upload those types of digital content to your mobile site, use HTML5 instead. Mobile devices support this markup language that lets you create animations.
Not Spacing Out Touch Targets
Interactions with touch targets on a mobile site occur via fingertips. Unfortunately, fingertips are much bigger and broader than the more accurate mouse cursors. So if you place these targets too close to each other, users may tap the wrong button or link.
You should aim to space your touch targets about 8 pixels apart, crosswise and lengthwise. This should provide enough gap to prevent visitors from touching another target.
Having Undersized or Colored Font
Visitors may not have problems reading text sized at 14 pixels on your desktop site. However, the same font size can be harder to see on smaller screens. This can force visitors to pinch and zoom the screen to read your content.
That can inconvenience your visitors, resulting in a poor customer experience.
Prevent that from happening by using 16 pixels as your mobile content’s base font size. You can raise this slightly for headlines so they can do their job of grabbing one’s attention.
Another font-related mistake to avoid is experimenting with colored fonts. They may look pretty, but they can be challenging to see if glare is present.
Glare can already be a problem indoors, but more so outdoors. It occurs when light (e.g., sunlight) hits a shiny surface and creates reflections. It results in poor visibility and difficult-to-read text.
So, stick to black font, as it’s easier to see even with glare. Visitors can still read your content outdoors on their mobile devices.
Avoid Mistakes With Creating Mobile Websites
Remember: Mistakes with creating mobile websites can lead to poor user experience. That can tarnish your reputation or, at the very least, make you rank low on results pages.
So, avoid all these blunders by following our actionable tips.
Ready to educate yourself on more digital marketing strategies? Then check out our guide on choosing the right marketing firm for your business!