How to Improve Website Experience for Mobile Users
Written by: Conrad Davenport
November 3, 2015
If you’ve done any research or have any knowledge of the changes happening within the web design industry over the last couple of years, you’ve probably heard about the importance of having a mobile site for your business. You may have even heard industry terms like “responsive” or “mobile-first.” They describe the specific methods of developing and designing a mobile-friendly site and, according to Google, these are just a few of the available options. The truth is, your web designer, Google, and hopefully you, should focus more on the user experience when designing a mobile site and less on the specific techniques used to build it.
But First, Some Mobile Facts…
Ten years ago, I used my phone to access the Internet for the first time and it was… painful. It was incredibly slow, the sites didn’t display well, and it wasn’t cheap either. Fast-forward to 2015 and now it’s impossible to go anywhere and not see people looking at their phones to check email, Facebook, competitor prices in stores, etc.
Did you know that in 2014 mobile overtook desktop in the number of global users, which is approaching 2 billion? This is a staggering number that accounts for almost ONE THIRD of the Earth’s population. Not only are there more people using mobile devices, but there’s also been major improvements in the speed of mobile internet connections, as well as familiarity of an average user with how mobile devices work. The fact that the Internet is more readily available and people are more comfortable with accessing websites from their phones explains these numbers:
- 9 out of 10 searches done on mobile devices lead to an action with half of them turning into sales (Source: SearchEngineLand).
- 25% of Americans access the Internet only from a mobile device (Source: Morgan Stanley).
- 91% of adults keep their smartphones within arm’s reach (Source: Morgan Stanley).
These facts show that having a mobile site for your business is essential for your business’ growth, and we see it with our clients as well. On our clients’ sites, on average 25-50% of traffic comes from mobile devices, with some sites getting the majority of their traffic from mobile.
The Keys to Effective Mobile Web Design
From our experience, the key to mobile site design is simply giving the user what they want. Someone coming to your site from a mobile phone may have a different intent than the user coming from a desktop computer. Sometimes, a mobile user may be looking only for the most important information about your business and they don’t want to dig for it through pages and pages of content.
That’s why we design custom user-experience geared websites specifically for the mobile users. Here are a few examples of the solutions we implement to help people find the information they want fast and frustration-free:
- Swipeable galleries allow users to swipe horizontally to view the next photo and are great if you want to showcase photos of your work.
- A navigation system should have large clickable areas that are easy to tap with a finger without clicking something else by accident.
- Large, clickable, easy-to-find call-to-action buttons are some of the most important elements on your mobile site that help lead the user through your sales funnel.
- We also take advantage of the interactive features, so that when a user clicks on them it opens their phone app to dial your business directly or launches their GPS system and loads your address to start the navigation.
In addition to these design and layout decisions, improving the experience of a mobile user sometimes also involves hiding parts of the site or simplifying them if they’re not needed, adjusting the font size and line height to make text more readable, changing links to ensure they’re easy to click, and 100s of other details that are sometimes overlooked by other web developers.
At Advantage Internet Marketing, we make sure not only that you have a mobile site design, but also that your mobile site offers the same quality user experience as your desktop site while being tailored to mobile user’s unique needs. If you’re ready to experience the level of detail we put into all of our sites, while placing the emphasis on getting you results, give us a call at (410)848-4737 or fill out the form below.