If your website still hasn’t been optimized for mobile, you have already lost mobile visitors to your competitors. Having a website with a mobile-friendly interface is essential to a great mobile ux (user experience). And a great user experience always increases your chances of engagement and conversion.
SEO and UX: The Difference
I have seen a lot of arguments online about these two features. I always say that SEO and UX may seem like different things, but they can’t be separated from each other. I used to think otherwise, but when I became more involved in SEO, I realized it was entwined with UX in a lot of ways.
According to Brendan, a Digital Analyst at domains4less.co.nz. “While one (SEO) lures visitors to your site, the other (UX) keeps them there.” It couldn’t be more aptly put.
Based on my studies so far, I have put together here the most important mobile UX design practices that will make your website efficient and enjoyable for mobile visitors.
Seamless switch from desktop to mobile UX
Many developers face the dilemma of whether to have a responsive web design or a traditional native app. While both options have different advantages, it’s smart to always consider your users. A native app may be beneficial to you, considering it is easily accessible, but do your users want to download an app every time?
In some cases, simplifying your desktop for mobile may mean reducing some much-needed information. In such situations, a mobile site may not be enough for an experienced mobile user. In those situations, it’s best to offer the option of a quick, smooth switch between mobile and desktop.
Use focused content
The value of having a focused content has always been emphasized. But as internet users become more impatient, the importance of focused content grows even more. Having smaller screens make mobile harder to find information, there is the need to streamline this search by zeroing in the information needed.
This means avoiding clutter and minimizing distractions such as interstitials. If visitors have to swipe horizontally on your site, it is something you need to look into. If it can’t be helped, then let them know early enough. Encourage easy interaction by getting into your users’ hearts. According to Nick Fink, Founder or UX for Change, user experience doesn’t have to end at the edges of a screen.
Following up from the last point, scrolling left to right on your mobile can be a bother. Trust me, I hate it too. Mobile navigation works best with up-down scrolling, not the former. Obviously, the type of navigation that works for desktop won’t translate well on mobile. For example, you cant have sub menus that show when a user hovers a cursor above them. Mobile users dislike multi-level menus.
Also, look out for space. It is easy for menus to take up large screen space on desktops sites. However, on mobile, you can’t afford to do so. It is better to use drop down accordion menus or situate an icon on the top left corner of the screen- I know, the ubiquitous hamburger menu. But it works.
Tap to call number
The idea of a smartphone is for contents in it to be smart too. Optimizing your site for quick and easy conversion process on mobile reduces the chance of abandonment. Your mobile users are often always on the move, and have limited time. So, you want a design that ‘moves’ with them.
Convert your static business number to a clickable link and simplify the process for a mobile user trying to connect with your business. Google make this even easier with its AdWords call extensions. The user may not even have to enter your site, they can call your business straight from Google’s search engine page. Consider that option too.
Field input types
Browsing on mobile is essentially a tapping experience. Users therefore, are less than enthusiastic at the thought of typing. If you have any type requests, such filling a form field, try to make the experience as quick and convenient as possible. I have abandoned sites for having too many form fields. I’m sure you may have at some point.
In addition to reducing the number of form fields on your website, enhance it by aligning the right mobile input type to the form fields. This is simply introducing small bits of code that recognise what virtual keyboard should appear when somebody taps into a certain form field.
For instance, a form field that requires an email address, should trigger the ABC keyboard, or one that requires a phone number should trigger the 123 keyboard. This may feel like a small alteration, but the difference can mean a lot to a user.
Emphasize primary CTAs
Are you trying to point an important message or sweet deal to your user? Sticking to the traditional CTA at the bottom of your website is likely to be missed by the mobile user. While it can work on desktop because of the scrolling ease, shirk it for mobile interface.
Instead, if you have something to announce, prioritize it so it appears on a prominent position on the site. If possible, place it above the fold. Because you are dealing with a small screen size, you can’t afford to waste space. However, this doesn’t mean you have to fill up every space you see. In fact, having the right amount of white space on your mobile site makes it easy on the eyes.
Ditch those images
Finally, this may seem contrary to everything you learned about website UX, but images on your mobile site may be hurting your numbers. Yes, it works amazingly on desktop, but mobile-first is about reducing size and page loading time; two things images affect. Hence you may achieve your effects through CSS and keep texts as texts.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you go all out text, as it might backfire. I’ll advocate a few images ONLY where necessary. Finding the right balance is what keeps any system stable.
Because every website is unique and mobile devices are unique, these mobile UX strategies are not completely set in stone. Be sure to test each of these changes on your mobile site and get lots of feedback from mobile device users to see what works best for them. While many might now seem obvious, you should never take them for granted.
(End mobile UX best practices tips)