As mobile phone popularity continues to grow, so does the necessity of having a website that is mobile friendly. In fact, in 2013 it was estimated that 91 percent of people had a mobile phone. Of this 91 percent, over 50 percent used their phone as their primary source of internet connection. This means that there is a dire need for websites to be mobile friendly. However, it can be difficult to discern if your site is mobile friendly, or if it is displayed incorrectly to those that visit your site.
Common Design Platforms
The display of a website needs to be done in a way that automatically scales the website’s layout to that of a device’s resolution or that is hosted on a subdomain. This can be done with:
Responsive Design: This approach uses various CSS rules so that a website conforms to the screen of a mobile device adequately.
Adaptive Design: This approach renders a page based on a device’s capabilities.
Mobile Site: Another approach is to determine the device that is used and to redirect users to a mobile-friendly design based on the device itself. Typically, a person would be redirected to m.example.com so that they can view the mobile version of the site.
Mobile Design Best Practices
Mobile devices have many benefits, but adhering to all of the best practices can be a tedious task. However, mobile usage is on the rise and it is essential that a website conforms to these practices immediately. Among these are:
- Speed: Mobile devices are typically slower than an average PC. This means speed is even more important than ever before. Websites should load in 3 – 5 seconds to be mobile-friendly.
- Use the Correct Tags: When redirecting, a site should use rel=canonical to ensure it is not seen as duplicate content.
Ensuring that a site works correctly on every mobile device can be nearly impossible. However, by using responsive design techniques, you will be able to have a website that is mobile-friendly from the start. As long as a site is fast loading, it should suffice as a mobile counterpart.