Mobile technology is constantly changing how we access the internet and it doesn’t look like its influence will slow down any time soon. When Google modified its platform to favor mobile devices, it was an important precedent for websites and their users world-wide.
But any WordPress site owners can streamline their users’ mobile experience without sacrificing quality PC access or by having to get neck-deep into the programming side of their website.
To deliver a mobile-friendly experience for your site’s visitors, make sure to consider the following tips:
Minimalistic and Essential Design
Many websites benefit from visual conciseness, but mobile versions are especially susceptible to design hangups that dissuade users from coming back. Keep the following principles in mind when testing out the mobile presentation of your site:
- For clickable elements, make sure the buttons and fields are large enough to easily access. There are few things on the internet more annoying than re-targeting the same small place with your finger!
- If your site has an associated physical location, like a store or hotel, include a clickable map so users can find their way via their preferred app!
- Make sure your site is mostly text and image-based so that content is more static. Lots of dynamic features creates slower load times and potentially confusing navigation since mobile screens are smaller with typically less powerful hardware.
- Use standard fonts! Less conventional-looking text can appear strange and sometimes illegible on mobile screens due to their smaller size and resolution differences. LambdaTest has a great guide for mobile web typography.
Apply Media Queries
Media queries allow more on-the-fly rendering of your site’s content to adapt to a variety of differences between devices and their browsers, such as screen resolution and visual style via WordPress templates.
The queries themselves are composed of CSS true/false rules that enable the same content to display in different ways on many devices, and not just the most popular ones. Essentially, media queries ask a given device what size and type it is, and adjusts content to fit those specifications so things don’t look out of place.
Many WordPress themes are designed with media queries in mind and are easily scalable with query templates that implement which sorts of visual specifications and theme style you want the mobile version of your website to take on. They’re a great way to test the differences between portrait and landscape modes!
Use Front-end Frameworks
WordPress theme frameworks drastically reduce the time it takes to create a website while still providing plenty of customization options. They’re often peer-reviewed so users don’t have to worry about their security or their particular functionality.
The front-end framework Bootstrap specializes in automatically scaling web pages across devices. This is substantially easier than coding for device differences manually, but such automation does come with a small cost: the more custom coding you have for your website’s functionality, the less likely Bootstrap’s scaling will work. But since mobile sites are usually optimized with fewer load-burdens, custom features are less likely obstacles.
Avoid Resource-Heavy Features (like Flash)
HTML5 has far more compatibility with fewer-needed technical resources and offers comparable features.