4 Ways to Go More Mobile in 2014
:: Larry Alton ::
It’s official: Americans now use more mobile devices than desktop to browse the Internet. People are perusing your websites, blogs and landing pages on tiny screens while riding on the subway, on tablets while waiting at the doctor’s office, and in the queue at Starbucks. If you don’t give them what they want, your competition will.
Going mobile can cost as much or as little as you want, but you might have to get creative if you want to save money. In an ideal world, you’d hire a Web professional to ensure your online presence reads perfectly on every browser and on every device, and she’d watch it daily to make sure there weren’t any glitches. That’s not feasible for most website owners, but there are things you can do to keep up with the mobile trend.
1. Analyze your Web statistics
You should know where you stand in terms of traffic, and if you don’t, then start keeping score today. There are many free tools, such as Google Analytics, that give you a great idea of which pages are performing and which aren’t. If you notice a decline anywhere, that area needs attention.
2. Start designing with mobile first
It’s probably either time you re-designed your website, or you’re updating it on a regular basis with new blogs, products or other details. Build responsive design into every effort so that it’s constantly a work in progress. There are also free tools to check for responsive design, which your IT person should be able to do for you or you can DIY in a pinch.
3. Embrace white space
Responsive design isn’t just about making sure your site loads at a reasonable pace on every device and browser. It also means that it looks good, and this leads to more white space. It’s not easy to read on a smartphone, but people will make it work if the content is good and it’s broken up into digestible chunks. Follow the golden rule: Treat your readers and customers how you’d like to be treated.
4. Ditch the glitz
Sure, a lot of flash animation and super high quality images and videos might look good on your laptop, but they can seriously slow down on some mobile devices or not display correctly at all. Even worse, this can read as SEO spam by Google algorithms and you might even get penalized for it. Beauty is found in simplicity.
This trend isn’t going anywhere; in fact, it’s likely that people will continue to go more mobile, so don’t get left in the dust. By taking strides toward offering mobile-friendly sites today, you’re staying ahead of the curve and getting a leg up on the competition. Keep an eye on mobile trends, make sure your site works on each new device that’s offered, and remember that easy access is what’s key.