Useful Stuff

Is your Website mobile friendly?

If you are reading this going “huh?”, then have a look at your Website on a mobile device – phone and/or tablet. You can also resize your browser window and get a similar look to a mobile display. How does it look? Compare to how this page looks if you do the same thing.

You will know straight away if your Website is optimised for mobile devices or not. If it is, it will fit nicely in the available screen area and be missing some of the extra bells and whistles that you see when viewing it on a desktop computer or laptop. If it does do this, great! At least you know the high percentage of users possibly viewing your site on a mobile device will be able to easily read and use your site and you probably don’t need to do much else. if your site has a nasty horizontal scrollbar and you need to zoom and drag to see anything, then this is not optimised for use on mobile devices an you could be missing out on potential business because the first thing most users will do it back out of there until they can easily find a site that is easy to read and use on their mobile device.

So what can you do about it?

Most modern Websites will have a “responsive layout” baked in to the design and the build of the website, but you may need to have asked for it at the time. Perhaps your developer prefers to create a second Website (I will write up a post about the differences between the two soon as I have just composed a lengthy email to a client that everyone should consider), not ideal, but sometimes it is necessary depending on information you are trying to display or capture.

The first thing you can do is get your Website “frontend code” (the html and style sheet) updated to a responsive layout so at least provide a cleaner more readable and easy to use version of your Website. Most of the time this does not require changes to content, but if it does, then maybe the second thing to do is to consider a content management system so you can do all this yourself and not have to go back to your expensive Web development company or agency to do all the time.

The benefit of a responsive Website is that you don’t need to create a mobile subdomain of your domain name and redirect users based on what they are viewing on, this usually means having to maintain a second Website which is just more time and $$’s. Stick with a responsive layout and make sure you are able to manage the content on your site.

If your Website does has some complex moving parts and you are afraid to get anyone to look at it or dig around the code, then perhaps you do need to consider a second Website. Either way, make sure it is mobile friendly and make sure you have some control over the content, at the end of these are two of the most important things on your site and is what will drive customers to do business with you.

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