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Why mobile website design is a must in 2016

 

If you aren’t already aware, the popularity of the mobile web has long since surpassed desktop browsing on all counts, this includes how most people are now browsing as well as making purchase transactions, as a result we’re seeing rapid growth and evolution when it comes to mobile website design, and by 2016, this is no longer optional.

If you haven’t already, once you finally do get round to building a mobile website it’s important to stay on top of design trends in order to ensure that your site is customer friendly. Here are some of our favourite recent trends.

Subtlety
There are a number of different ways why that a developer would recommend a more subtle approach to suit a mobile experience. For starters, less is more when it comes to speeding up your website, and with changing networks as we travel around on our mobile devices, speed becomes very important.

The colour palette now more commonly used for designing for the mobile web are more neutral and tonal, with gentle colour schemes that allow your user to focus on the text or images, as opposed to the background.
Plus, if you haven’t yet heard of ghost icons, then you should check them out. They are clickable icons that you can place onto or over any high-res imagery on your page, taking the place of big clunky static button icons.

Minimalism
Everything relating to mobile website design returns to the experience of browsing the web on a smaller, handheld device. Browsing becomes a nightmare, as I’m sure you’ll have experienced, when on a mobile device or tablet, a web page has features pop up from here and there affecting your experience. This is one of the limitations you have to work around when designing for mobile, far more so than when using a desktop computer. This partly explains why we’re seeing more stripped back, minimal designs now, some examples of the features you’re sure to see include ghost icons / buttons, that we mentioned earlier, as well as hidden menus that disappear when you’re not using them. Another recent revolution is scrolling through pages, left to right as with a book as opposed to top to bottom. Also, expect to see scrolling become a preference over clicking, where possible. All of these innovations are designed in part of the race to create a better handheld online experience but they also manage to add something to the experience of desktop browsing more generally.

Interactive Design
We can also now see web pages become more animated and interactive, producing a more entertaining and intuitive experience, but also one which captures our attention far more than plain text on a background. It won’t always be necessary, but in aspect like taking advantage of scrolling as opposed to clicking, and anything else which uses touch screen features to give an interactive experience of the website is a bonus in mobile design. Perhaps the best way to think of it is that mobile website design is in many respects moving closer to native app design.

Is Mobile Website Design Relevant to My Website?

 

So you have built a web page and it is running smoothly. The graphics are clear, your fonts are readable, your content is superb – is anything missing? In this modern day of technology it is important to remember that people carry mobile devices with them all of the time, and that an increasing number of web searches are done from cell phones, iPods, and tablets. So if you are wondering what is missing, it is that you do not have a mobile website design.

Why Is This Important?

  • Many searches are done from smartphones or tablets on Wi-Fi or data connections
  • These small devices are not optimized to show the same quality of web site as laptops and desktop computers are able to load
  • If you want your site to be easily accessible from hand held devices such as smart phones, tablets, and other devices, it is important to try to optimize your site for smaller screens and smaller processors
  • The same analytics for SEO which decide if your site is optimized enough to land in the first handful of search results takes into account how accessible your web page is

So how do you set out to make sure you have a good mobile website design? To begin with, many hosting sites have features which help you to easily modify the user interface for mobile devise to be able to use your content in a more adaptive way.

If the host you are using does not have these capabilities, then it is important that your mobile site has fewer graphics which would take long to load, higher contrast types and fonts, and easily navigated menus. With features such as these it will be much easier to access information on a site that would ordinarily be more computer friendly. Another thing that some older smartphones and browsers still have difficulty with is java scripts, so it may be a wise decision to stay away from those as much as possible with your mobile website.

Another option for mobile web design is to elect to create an app for your website. This may not be practical for your website, especially if it is a fairly static website which would make having an app irrelevant. But if you are providing a web service of some sort other than just information and text, it may be helpful to create an app for the mobile version of your website.

Whichever route you decide to take is up to you, just remember that this is a key way to reach more users and boost your site availability.

Mobile Website Design Guidelines for Entrepreneurs

The mobile platform has changed dramatically since the introduction of smartphone and tablet technology and what was once only possible on a desktop or laptop computer is now as easy to access and perform in the palm of your hand.

This technology is still evolving and it’s important for business owners to take this into consideration if they plan to connect with as many people as possible as it is more common to browse, shop or interact through this type of medium than ever before.

The following guidelines will help you to provide a great user experience for your mobile customers:

Reflect Your Brand

Your customers should be able to recognize the branding of your company on the mobile website or application.  Using the same graphics, web font and wording as on your main website it important as well as what you need the mobile platform to do like being able to shop and purchase items.  Focus the design on what you consider to be the most important features.

Target Products

If you are limited in terms of space and resources, then you need to be specific in what you include in your mobile platform version of your site.  This will also help you to optimize the performance of your site.

Be Customer Focused

It’s easy to get carried away about what you want your mobile site to do but try to remember the most important thing that will determine your success – your visitor, their needs and what they need to be able to do to turn from a browser into a customer.

Optimize Your Mobile Site

Mobile Internet is not like Internet you have at home.  It can be lost easily if signal is weak and is influenced by factors outside of your control like the environment.  Customers don’t like to be kept waiting for ages to load or spend time completing complex forms.  All of these things waste their time.  They want to be able to access your screens quickly so optimize each page to enable them to do this easily.

Use A Scaling Toolkit

Mobile platforms come in a variety of sizes and using a scaling toolkit can help you maintain the functionality of your site but also make your site look and perform the same across different platforms so decide what you absolutely have to have on the screens across all devices that will be compulsory to your business.

Monitor Progress

Be involved in the design, development and marketing of your product all the way along to make sure communication is open and your expectations are met.

For your mobile website design or app to be successful you need to make sure that choices made about the design don’t affect the performance and that needs to be an important factor right from the start so keep this in mind throughout all the stages and you will create an experience your customers will love.

Effective Marketing With Mobile Website Design

In this current climate of instant gratification and wanting information on the go, the fastest growing marketing arena is the mobile device industry.  Mobile devices are in high demand from mobile phones to tablets; you can do everything on these portable devices that only used to be possible on your computer.  Smart business owners understand the importance of this emerging market and will take full advantage of the advertising opportunities that it presents.

To secure you reach a wider customer audience and to secure the financial future of your business it is important to think about mobile website design.  You need a website that is not only functionally flawless but that will be attractive to customers and investors to encourage them to use their technology to access your website find information they need, make purchases or contact you about any questions they may have regarding their specific requirements.

You can ensure your business is ready for this mobile market by following these simple tips to make sure your mobile website is able to compete in today’s market:

  • Create a mobile version of your website with a clear and easy to use interface.
  • Use several mobile advertising networks to drive traffic to your mobile website.
  • Take advantage of pay-per-click advertising, this is where you pay a host website a set fee for each visitor that clicks on your advertisement on their page.
  • Keep your page design minimal and succinct with a user-friendly layout to enable your customers to quickly navigate to the relevant pages.
  • Keep forms short and simple by only including relevant fields to complete.  The way mobile devices are designed makes it difficult to complete long or overly complex forms.
  • Optimize your mobile website to ensure pages load quickly, reducing file sizes when possible.
  • Take advantage of mobile commerce to sell your products and allow your customers to book services online if applicable.
  • Add a “tap-to-call” button to your side so customers can call you if they have any questions of would rather talk to you in person.

Mobile Website Design Considerations For 2015

Mobile design has radically changed! At least, that’s what almost any modern blog post on the subject will tell you. And it has, if you’re comparing it to 2007. But the truth is that in the past few years, there have been precious few radical shifts in the foundations of mobile website design. You have responsive design, you have minimalist design (sometimes called ‘flat’ design, or the new red-headed stepchild, ‘material’ design), you have a focus on load times, and you have SVG graphics for any and every image that you expect to show up on a mobile device.

 

Guess what? Those were the same things people were saying were “new for 2012.” The only things that have really changed since then is that we’ve learned that some things aren’t good as universal rules. Responsive design, for example, is really not ideal for some kinds of web pages — companies that rely on a page with many small interactions are better off building entirely different mobile sites than they are on trying to force a complex website into a responsive format.

 

So what is going to be new for 2015? Here are our predictions:

  • Infinite Scrolling Goes Mobile. Infinite Scrolling was popularized by Tumblr in 2011, and has taken a lot of sites by storm. It’s not great for every kind of page (looking at you, e-commerce anything), but there’s no real reason it shouldn’t play nice with a well-designed mobile page. It just hasn’t — yet.
  • Microinteractions Do, Too. Microinteractions are the technical term for ‘any element of your website that interacts with the user in an unexpected and clever way that doesn’t actually affect the usability of the page.’ In other words, if you mouseover a button and it pulses with a momentary gleam of energetic light, that’s a microinteraction. Right now, mobile sites don’t have a lot of these small elements, but mobile web designers are learning that they can play, too — and we think they will.
  • Card-Based Design Becomes The Norm. Card-based design — witness Pinterest — is kind of the ideal format for information in the tl;dr era. A picture, just a few words, easy to manipulate, easy to scroll through large numbers of (perhaps even infinitely scrolling to do so!)…they’re not universal, but they’re good for a startling amount of purposes. We think cards are going to be a hot mobile web technique this year.

 

Are we always right? Heck, no. But we’re pretty good at this — bookmark the page and check back at the end of the year to mock our arrogance!

Mobile Website Design: A New Era for Consumerism

In recent years, phones have become so sophisticated that they’re able to do things that were only possible on computers a mere decade ago. Smart devices are highly popular in the fast-paced world of the average consumer and businesses are changing their marketing strategies accordingly. Having a mobile website is great way for businesses to connect with their customers on the go and get ahead of the computer-based competition. However, mobile website design is considerably different than computer web design and requires some specific alterations in order for it to be successful.

Mobile Booking Pages
Much like a landing page for your website, mobile booking pages are the first things that your customer will see when they go to your site from their mobile device. There are several advertising networks that specifically cater to mobile consumers which can pitch your site and the services that it offers. Another useful thing about having a mobile booking page is that it has PPC, or ‘Pay Per Click’, capabilities that will let you see how many people are accessing your page through mobile devices and adjust accordingly.

Less is More
Since many mobile screens are fairly small, an important aspect of mobile website design is the ability to have a simple and straightforward page. It’s important to use the bare minimum required to sell your product without extra images or text. It also means having shorter forms. Many people will stay on a site for about 5 minutes before looking elsewhere, meaning it’s vitally important to have as little required information as possible.

Time is Money
Many mobile devices don’t have the same streaming and loading capabilities as a computer. Because of this, it’s a good idea to keep an eye on how long it takes your business booking page to load. Larger file sizes mean longer loading times and a greater chance of the customer deciding to leave your listing. This doesn’t mean that your mobile website can’t have an aesthetic look, but generally having a lot of links, graphics, and other flair are going to slow down loading times considerably and make your mobile business less effective.

Give Your Website a Face with a Web Presenter

Website design is constantly evolving and each tactic to incorporate new marketing tools into your website leads to a cropping up of a newer, more evolved tool. The newest rage in website design is the use of a web presenter. These presenters can be incorporated into various videos in different sections of the website to welcome guests or sell your product. Here are a few benefits of using this great marketing tool on your website:

  • Visualize: Words are a great tool to get your product out, but images count for more….videos for even more. Using a web presenter on your website to present your products can breathe life into your products.
  • Add the Human Touch: Most websites can be impersonal, but in incorporating videos or presenters within your website can introduce a human element into your website. This introduces trust among your visitors and will make your website more presentable.
  • Show Off: You know your website or product is different and good, but do your visitors know that? Probably not so much with words, but with videos, you can portray your products and your website in a whole new light. So, feel free to show off in your video.
  • One Time Investment: While other marketing tools require constant updates and fees, videos –especially homepage videos-can be an economical marketing option. You only have to pay to make a video once and pay for it once, especially if it is a generic home page video. While some customization is recommended, it’s not necessarily required to do so.
  • Tap into Video Search Engines: Incorporating videos into your website opens up a new marketing tool for you. The videos are also a way to attract the attention of video search engines that can also attract more visitors to your website.

While the act of incorporating videos with web presenters may be a new addition, it is not hard to incorporate in the existing design of your website. In addition, for the price, it offers some great benefits. It can also help you increase your traffic, income and profits, in the long run.

The Design Process and Website SEO

Websites are a vital part of any business today. Even businesses that just have a local presence are finding that more and more of their customers are using the internet when they are looking for a business to use and products to buy.

When your businesses website is being constructed it needs to look attractive and be functional but it is important to think about website SEO and how to make your website appear higher in the search rankings. A good website design and quality content are a great start that will help your website be rated higher and ensure that your target audience is able to see you when searching on the internet.

Keywords
One area that is sometimes not understood is how keywords are used in website SEO. At one time the idea was to have the keywords repeated as often as possible. This does not make for good content and now the search engines actively mark down pages that use a keyword too many times.

Selection of keywords is very important and by having an optimized website and good content that uses the keywords and related keywords in an informative way your website will get the maximum possible ranking. It is important to have the keywords used appropriately in other areas such as the description of images and tags.

The Need for Speed
Speed is an important factor not only for how a search engines rates the pages but also in the experience the end user receives. Pages that load slower can cause visitors to go elsewhere and search results can be impacted negatively. This means that images should be optimized so that they load fast and if possible a smaller sized image can be used and when clicked it takes the viewer to a more detailed and slower loading image outside the page.

Social Media
One of the best value for money options in website SEO is social media and by encouraging people to share content and like you or follow you on their favorite social media site you build quality links and make your website more visible. Using a quality SEO company to bring all of these together on your website is a must and will ensure your website is a success.