On the 10th of September AdMarula hosted its 5th publisher seminar at the Grand Daddy Hotel. The objective of the seminar was to share some useful tips on website development and optimization – a stronger focus on technology than at our previous events.
For those of you who couldn’t make it we thought it would be helpful to share some of the highlights from that morning. One of them was the importance of building a site that is mobile ready i.e. as accessible on desktop as on mobile.
But what exactly is mobile ready?
Traditional design used to put more emphasis on desktop design, but with the increase of smartphones penetration this has had to change due to the constraints on mobile devices.
Mobile phones have bandwidth constraints and sites designed for desktop and with heavy images will take a longer time to load on a mobile device. Users might leave before the full site is loaded and not come back.
Also, some handsets have high resolutions, so even if there is a bandwidth restriction, the site still needs to look sleek. It’s all about finding a balance.
Another very important point going for mobile-ready websites, as we mentioned in previous articles, is related to the SEO constraints. Google, since April 2015, ranks sites depending on how they render on mobile devices. If a site is not mobile friendly, then Google will give it a negative score. You can test if your site is mobile compliant on Google Webmasters
How to start building a mobile friendly site
When building a website, you need to have a structural approach. Starting with a mobile centred CSS is important as well as loading the appropriate images per device sizes. Using a fluid design is useful as it will cater for both mobile and desktop’s different usage patterns.
You will also need to optimise your images for mobile and desktop. For that, it is important to check the image sizes and serve the right image for the right device. This useful tool will help you optimise your images:
If you need to choose a theme, look for themes that are mobile friendly first and check for responsiveness and fluidity before you buy anything.
If you are not an expert in coding and prefer hiring a developer to do the job, make sure to describe and draw the user journey so that everything is clear between you and the developer. It is important to know what you want and what the site should be doing before you send a brief. Be specific and detailed as any changes might cost you extra money that you are not ready to invest.
Building and optimising a website is not that easy, but following a few simple steps might help you when going through the process and avoid making unnecessary mistakes.
If you would like to access the full seminar content and get more detail about building a mobile friendly website, please visit our demo site:
Caroline Pourtyeron – Head of Affiliates