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Will the Real Mobile-Adaptive Website Please Stand Up?

It’s been proven that more people use their mobile phones than their laptops. Almost everyone has a smartphone and they are constantly using it for communication and looking for information. We live in a fast-paced world and it isn’t going to get any slower. Patience, like the average attention span is dwindling. People prefer to get information in order to make important, purchasing decisions on the go. This means that they should be able to know everything about a brand, service or product (via the website, social media profiles or apps) using their phones as they go about daily activities.

At the Ken Saro-Wiwa Innovation Hub, we teach developers the essence and rudiments of building mobile-adaptive websites. Join us!

The term “mobile-adaptive” means that they must be mobile-friendly and mobile-responsive. Mobile users need sites that work well on smaller screens, use touch controls, are easy to navigate, and load content quickly. Having a mobile-adaptive website has become a critical part of having an online presence. You must make sure that the users of your website can have great experiences when viewing/using it on their phones.

The terms mobile-friendly and mobile-responsive, though similar have different meanings. Mobile-responsiveness is a very important characteristic of a mobile-friendly website.

What Does a Mobile-Friendly Website Function Like?

The desktop version of a site is usually difficult to view and navigate on a mobile device. This requires the user to pinch or zoom in order to read the content and navigate through the site. This is a frustrating experience and usually causes users to abandon the site for a mobile-friendly one. A mobile-friendly website is readable and easily usable.

The mobile-friendliness of a website begins with the appearance. This determines whether users begin navigating through or not. Here are some features that must not be skimped on when building websites, and even applications, that will attract and keep users.

  • The website must be appealing to the eyes if it will command attention. Lots of web developers ignore this all important trait.

  • It must have a responsive display. When a website is responsive, it means that the layout and content adapts to the size of the screen it’s presented on. A responsive website will automatically change to fit the screen size of the device it is being used on. Typically, there are four general screen sizes that a responsive design must be adapted for- the widescreen desktop monitor, the smaller desktop (or laptop), the tablet, and the mobile phone. As the screen gets smaller or larger, the content shifts and changes to the best display for each screen. This feature is critical for every website.

  • The fonts must be easy to read, else the content on the website will be of no use. Script fonts, for example, will be difficult to read.

  • The media (images, infographics and videos) used must be adapted for the right screens, without the need to scroll or resize to see the complete item… you don’t want them looking blurry.

  • Think “swipes & taps” rather than mouse clicks. Websites designed for desktop users are easiest to navigate with mouse clicks, not swipes, taps, and touches. However, there’s no mouse on a smartphone, so you’ll need to give mobile users a way to navigate using touch controls.

  • Ease in Navigation. It’s frustrating looking for certain categories or price lists on a site, it is even works trying to type in the search bar using a smartphone keyboard. It would be better to organize your mobile site in such a way that users can find what they need without having to type in the search field, or filling out the “Contact Us” form. In terms of navigation, Flat site architecture is a best pal, because it helps mobile users to find things on your site without having to tap through too many layers along the way or use to the search bar.

The bottom line? If you’d like your website to “be on the map” and stay relevant, ensure that it is mobile-adaptive.

The bottom line? If you’d like your website to “be on the map” and stay relevant, ensure that it is mobile-adaptive.

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