5 ways to optimize your website for mobile

Three in five visits to your site come via smartphones and tablets, and those on-the-go visitors haven’t the patience for expansive chunks of text or slow-loading videos. Here’s what to do.

How to be mobile friendly

With nearly six in 10 website visits made nowadays through smartphones and tablets, optimizing your website for mobile has become crucial.

Mobile devices comfortably support most platforms, making them more convenient for perusing social media, watching videos, playing games and, most important to you, shopping online.

That trend will only gain momentum, so digital marketers must assiduously optimize their website content for mobile users.

Here are five easy and useful tips:

1. Use light visuals. Heavy visuals increase the time needed to display web pages, and users are impatient. Although internet speed is increasing, you can’t trust your customer’s connection. Compress images as much as possible without significantly diminishing their quality. Try cropping images into patterns with a similar shape; that reduces image size while retaining quality.

2. Upload short videos. Longer videos increase loading time and reduce the overall working speed of the website. Again, people are impatient and typically will fast-forward through longer videos. You can tighten most videos significantly while still preserving key messages and delivering information coherently. Rather than uploading a full video to your website, offer a YouTube link—especially for longer videos.

3. Make your text readable. Before hitting “publish,” preview the mobile version. Fonts, word count, paragraph length and other factors can turn the text into a visual mess on mobile platforms. Break large chunks into smaller, easily digestible paragraphs. Most readers skim, so use bullet points and bold subheads to organize your key elements.

4. Design an intuitive interface for mobile devices. Logically prioritize the sections of your webpage to enhance user experience and drive traffic. Remember, especially, that the desktop interface is horizontal and mobile is vertical. Usually, it’s more convenient for mobile users to scroll down than to click on multiple pages. Besides the additional hassle, multiple pages increase the load time.

5. Create buttons that work on both platforms. Mobile phone customers demand bigger screens for gaming, watching movies and using social media, yet some websites still don’t have buttons that work for both desktop and mobile platforms—because of either size or functionality. Test every button.

A version of this post first appeared on the Glean.info blog.

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