Optimizing Websites for Mobile Devices

Posted in Informational, What's New

We’ve all been there, squinting at our cell phones trying to find that one link to the information we need. Zooming in, zooming out, scrolling, scrolling….. scrolling! And when you finally find the link you were looking for, you accidentally click the link next to it.

If you are anything like me, expletives generally follow. But now there is a solution! There are new technologies that allow mobile devices to detect the type of device being used and adjust the website accordingly. You can still have a website that looks amazing when viewed on a 21″ monitor, but allows people using a smartphone to navigate easily without all that squinting and scrolling.

Providing Information That Smartphone Users Need

MobilAp-medAny website can be optimized for viewing on mobile devices, but the trick is to think ahead and design a site that truly takes advantage of the tools available. One of the main reasons people visit a website using their smartphone is to contact the organization. So, why not make that information available right away? The mobile website Page Design created for The Law Offices of Cecil & Cianci took advantage of this. We designed their mobile homepage to give a short introduction of the business and then display their contact information. One tap of the screen and the user is dialing their number. Maybe they want to send an email instead. No problem, one tap brings up their email program and they are sending Cecil & Cianci a message. Directions are also important to smartphone users. When you’re in the car trying to locate a business, bigger maps and easy-to-access directions are crucial.

Navigation

mobil-navigationClicking website links when you are on a mobile device can be challenging. There are several options when it comes to to designing site navigation. Take for example the Cecil & Cianci site shown above. The links take up the full width of the screen and have extra white space above and below them. This allows room for an average size finger to tap them. In the Information Architects site shown to the right (we did not design this site), the navigation appears in a drop down menu allowing the user to see more information on the page. When you view the same site on a desktop, all the page links are visable and no longer in a drop down menu.

Statistics

It is hard to ignore the statistics. According to Digital Buzz, nine out of ten people in the US use mobile phones and 70% of the world’s population use mobile phones. Impressive as that statistic is, the infographic below created by Microsoft Tag, really blows me away. By 2014 the number of mobile users surfing the net will overtake desktop internet users! For those of you who sell products or services through your website, take a look at the product related statistics also located on the Microsoft Tag site. There is no ignoring the mobile phenomenon and some of the statistics may surprise you.

CellPhoneStatistic

If you are interested in optimizing your website for mobile devices, give us a call at (916-457-0108) or send us an email. We would love to take a look at your site and discuss the options available.

Stay tuned for more information on web based iPad applications, responsive layout and media query. We have several exciting new projects in the works and will be sharing those with you soon.