8 basics every mobile website design must include.
Visitors using mobile website browsers are typically on the move. They’re in need of information quickly. Time is of the essence. In the mobile website world, less is often more. Small screen sizes mean you needn’t be too wordy; text should be direct and to the point.
The objective of most websites (including mobile ones) is to convert visitors into actual followers, contacts, customers, clients and sales. Consider the points below rules to follow to make sure your mobile website design is as effective in this mission as possible!
- Simple navigation promotes the use of all mobile websites! The more complicated your website and the more options you present, the more time it takes visitors to sort out where to go. Remember time is of the essence. Present your information along with your mobile website navigation in the simplest manner possible. You’ll have happy visitors and happy visitors more easily become happy customers.
- Use only vertical scrolling! With the evolution of Apples Iphones and their Android based competitors with their similar screen dimensions, vertical scrolling is the accepted (and expected) method for moving about mobile websites. Mobile designs should not force visitors to scroll horizontally for normal navigation. Mobile websites should be designed to only require vertical scrolling, and in an ideal world no scrolling at all. Whenever possible shorten your pages. Narrow down what the visitor is looking for through a series of taps on selections, rather than force them to scroll a page. The odds of converting a client from your home page to your client are best accomplished with as little scrolling as possible.
- Design usable navigation buttons and links. We’ve all heard of the guy with two left thumbs, well new users to the mobile internet will really appreciate your mobile site if their ten left fingers can successfully tap its controls. Buttons and tappable zones should not be so close together that they can easily be miss tapped. They should be large enough to accommodate the clumsiness that may accompany any human who attempts to do two things at the same time like walking and browsing!
- Shortest possible contact forms. Don’t ask the visitor to input more information that you actually need. Some of the luxuries of data collection we’ve become accustomed to on the desktop full sized internet will have to be left behind when designing a mobile website. Just like going camping with your spork (spoon-fork) combo to save weight, great mobile websites forgo the need for non essential information collection to prevent excessive form page drops. If you need more than an email address and phone number your potential client may just find a simpler mobile website that is less demanding of their data input.
- Automate the dialing of cell phones directly to your phone number. Mobile browsers offer some neat functionality facilitated by the fact that they reside on devices that contain phones. You can offer the convenience of tapping on a phone icon that will cause the mobile phone to automatically dial your number. Quick, easy and requires less page space than actually publishing your phone number for manual dialing.
- Automated directions to your brick and mortar address (if you use one). Icons can be added to a mobile website that when tapped open the browser to show a map and provide directions to your location. Because mobile smart phones have integrated GPS they can automatically provide directions from the web browsers current physical location to your door.
- Incorporate only the images needed to convey your message. Just like in the days of dial up internet, good mobile website designs pay close attention to the time delays that images can add to the page load and website browsing experience.
- Provide navigation to your full sized sites. Allow the visitor to tap and visit your full sized web pages if they desire more information immediately.
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