What are some common issues designers face with mobile web design.
Digital marketing has evolved to become a critical aspect of every business today, so strategies like SEO, SEM, SMM are common terms for marketers. It comes as no surprise, especially now that optimized websites are a must, to reach more users and boost organic traffic. Times have changed. Where desktop computers used to be the dominant device for browsing the Internet, users have now switched over to mobile devices.
What does this mean for your website? With over 50% of global web traffic coming from mobile devices since 2017, mobile optimization is no longer an option but a necessity to stay competitive. However, optimizing mobile web design is much easier said than done. Many times, you will encounter several challenges along the way. Perhaps your mobile site is not ranking as well as your desktop site or the experience is not as good on these devices.
Whatever the case may be, ignoring your mobile web design can result in missed opportunities in capturing more customers. Whether you are on the road to launching your mobile site or trying to attract more mobile visitors, here are some common issues you might face and how you can fix them.
Non-Responsive Mobile Web Design
Non-responsive mobile designs are a major culprit for poor mobile traffic. You can have the most beautiful and well-designed desktop site, but if the design is non-responsive, mobile users will not be able to view it properly. Responsive means your website adjusts to the viewer’s screen to ensure users can read the content seamlessly and navigate pages easily.
Mobile devices have a much smaller screen size compared to desktops, so you have to consider how you can optimize your pages in a way that they provide the optimal experience across all devices. Having a responsive web design does not mean that you simply scale your site’s desktop version to a smaller size. Instead, you have to think about how your content and layout will adapt to each device from the very beginning to create a consistent design.
Slow Loading Times
Slow mobile pages can be one of the biggest things that kill your mobile traffic. According to a research done by Google, 53% of users will leave a web page if it does not load within three seconds, so you can imagine how short of a timeframe you are working with.
Mobile site speed will also be especially important now as it is one of the main metrics in the Google Core Web Vitals. Slow loading times will factor into your page’s LCP or Largest Contentful Paint score, so it is high time to review this and check what you can do to improve on this aspect.
Not Optimized for Mobile-First Indexing
Since 2015 Google has been vocal about its support for mobile sites. Back then, the search engine officially added mobile-friendliness to its ranking factors. Fast forward to 2017, Google began to apply mobile-first indexing on a handful of sites. Fast forward again to March 2020, it was announced all sites will now be moved to this indexing.
Mobile-first indexing means that Google uses the mobile version of sites to index and rank them. If you already have a responsive design, this should not be a cause of concern since you are essentially using the same site for mobile and desktop versions.
However, if you have separate mobile pages designed for these devices, you have to make sure your sites are consistent all throughout. It means they have the same content, metadata, structured data, and linking structures. It’s important because if Google crawls your sites and finds that some elements are missing on one version, this could affect your rankings on search results.
Unclear Page Content
One of the biggest challenges to creating a mobile web design is scaling your site to the right size while retaining important information. After all, the leap from a desktop to a mobile screen is huge, so you are much more limited with the latter. Because of this, you have to make sure you highlight the main message and content on the page.
Sometimes, things that look good on a desktop might not look as appealing on mobile because this can distract the viewer from the actual content. For example, elements like menu bars or graphics might be useful on a desktop site. However, on a mobile site, these will only push your content down and make it harder for users to find whatever information you want them to read.
To avoid having this problem, design your mobile website in a manner that the main content is displayed above the fold or at the first view. Try to make buttons and menus smaller to prevent them from taking up all the space, and use lazy loading to ensure the text loads before all the other elements. Ultimately, the goal is to make sure your content shows up quickly and is the first thing that users see when they click your site on mobile.
Poor Navigation Experience
Nailing the user experience on mobile devices is key to keeping your customers on your site. Navigation, in particular, is a critical part of this aspect since you have to make it easy for users to go through different parts of your site. Otherwise, they may end up feeling frustrated and decide not to look at what you have to offer anymore.
One of the central elements to navigation is usually the menu, which helps users jump from one page to another. If you have a large site with multiple levels and sublevels on your navigation menu, it can be hard to translate this on mobile since it will end up looking like a long, long list of pages. As such, you can consider focusing on top-level pages for your mobile menu, so users have less options and do not feel as overwhelmed when seeing them.
Optimizing your calls to action (CTAs) is another important step to growing your site’s mobile traffic. Even if you manage to get users to click on your site from their mobile devices, you also have to consider how you can make your CTAs visible and enticing enough to click. Again, you are working with significantly less space on the mobile version, so you have to be strategic in designing and laying out your CTAs.
One thing to consider with your mobile web design is that any content will likely push down your CTAs. As such, you might have to write shorter texts or keep your content concise. There is no fixed answer as to how you can optimize your mobile CTAs, so testing different placements and designs will be helpful to find the right fit.
Going back to what was mentioned earlier, mobile devices have significantly smaller screen sizes compared to desktops, so you have to be more careful about your design. Cluttered pages can leave a bad impression on viewers, especially if there are so many things going on that they are unable to find the information they need. Likewise, putting too many elements can slow down your pages, so you must be careful with this.
In most cases, you will need to cut down on some content to avoid cluttering your pages. However, if you do this, you also have to make sure you do not remove the essential parts that users look for when they visit.
Not Integrated with Social Media
Many assume that SEO works in isolation and that it is enough to wait for the users to come organically. While this is one option you might take, it limits your reach and prevents you from maximizing your online presence. A big chunk of your mobile users will likely be active on social media, so you also have to incorporate this in your marketing strategy.
Aside from posting regular content on social media and engaging with your audience, make sure you also integrate your links into your website. You want to make it easy for users to find your social accounts when browsing your site, so it is best to include them on every page. By doing this, you can also take advantage of sharing features that will allow users to share content from your site to their feeds.
No matter how cautious you are or how strong your security measures may be, you can never be too safe with your website. Failing to make regular backups can cause you to lose all your content if your site is hacked without notice. Backups will be particularly important if you regularly update your content. The last thing you want is to go backward with your progress.
Work with the Experts to Create an Effective Mobile Web Design
Mobile is, without a doubt, dominating the online environment. Search volumes conducted on these devices are only expected to increase over time, so the earlier you optimize your mobile website, the better.
We understand the challenges involved in creating a seamless mobile experience with your website, so our Clearwater web design services are designed to solve all your digital marketing concerns. Call P3 Agency today at 1 800 515 9422 to schedule a free marketing assessment. We will happily listen to your concerns and help you find the best solutions to ensure you achieve your desired objectives.