Did you know that more people now access the Internet through their mobile devices than through desktop computers? If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, you’re losing out on a lot of potential traffic and business. In this article, we will discuss the benefits of having a responsive website and how to make your website more mobile-friendly.
To illustrate the pace at which this search platform has changed, in 2011 the percentage of internet traffic on mobile was just 6%.
In 2022 it’s closer to 70%.
That’s staggering growth!
The key takeaway for local businesses is that the MAJORITY of local searches are carried out on mobile.
Google has switched to mobile-first Indexing
Since 2020 Google has been using mobile-first indexing.
This means that when Google crawls and indexes your website, it does so primarily using the mobile version of your site.
Therefore the content and performance on the mobile version of your site will influence your sites’ search engine rankings.
Benefit 1: A responsive website will look good on all devices
A responsive website is one that is designed to look good on all devices, not just mobile. This means that your website will look great whether it is being viewed on a phone, tablet, or computer.
Although good looks aren’t everything, a website that is designed well, is solid and delivers easy to consume content with clarity, will instil trust in the user.
Benefit 2: Your website will be easier to use and navigate on a mobile device
If your website is not mobile-friendly, it can be very difficult and frustrating to use on a mobile device. Small text, hard-to-click buttons, and squeezed content can make for a very bad user experience.
A mobile-friendly website will be much easier to use on a mobile device, which will make for a better user experience.
Google has introduced criteria that it recommends all websites should endeavour to meet.
Core Web Vitals measure LCP (Largest Contentful Paint), FID (First Input Delay), and CLS (Cumulative Layout Shift). Without going into technical detail, these criteria basically measure loading speeds and whether elements shift on the page as it’s loading.
Page Experience incorporates Core Web Vitals (CWV) and is an overall measure of user experience on both mobile and desktop.
Google has stated that the URL with the best, most relevant content to search queries will always perform best. But, all things being equal, if 2 URLs had great content and authority, the URL with the better page experience will rank higher.
This then should be motivation to all business owners and web designers to own/build websites with great all-round performance.
Benefit 3: A website built for mobile loads quickly
If your website is not mobile-friendly, it can take a long time to load on a mobile device. This can be very frustrating for users and will cause them to leave your site.
This can increase your bounce rate and hurt your rankings, not to mention the loss of a potential customer who is now eagerly browsing your competitors’ site!
Benefit 4: A mobile-friendly website can help you rank higher in search engines
As mentioned above, there are certain aspects of poor mobile performance that will cause your SERP rankings to suffer.
These are most notably:
- Slow loading speeds
- Poor user experience
Conversely, if you’ve invested in mobile-friendly web design you will see benefits in your SEO efforts too. This is due to positive signals from things like low bounce rate and higher dwell time on your web pages.
Dwell time is the time spent on a web page by a user before clicking back to search results. A higher dwell time suggests that the page content satisfied the search intent. This therefore, will positively influence the performance of the page in search results for that query.
If the user doesn’t even get the chance to assess your content because the page takes so long to load or the experience is poor, your page content won’t even get the chance to satisfy search intent.
Benefit 5: Your content is more easily shared
A mobile-friendly website is easier to share on social media.
If your website is not mobile-friendly, this can limit your reach and the potential for your website to grow more quickly.
A mobile-friendly website can help you connect with your audience by making it easier for them to consume your content and share with others. All social media networks are built to target mobile, so should your website.
This is especially important if you are using your website to generate leads or sales.
How to improve the performance of your website on mobile devices
Here are some practical ways that you can improve the performance of your website on mobile devices:
Use a responsive layout
Make sure your website is responsive. A responsive website uses the same content as your desktop version but delivers it to mobile devices in an easy to consume, readable format for the particular screen size of the visitors’ device.
Optimise all images
Optimize the images on your web pages. Your images should be sized correctly and optimised/compressed using a good compression tool. Lazy loading your images is also a good idea to optimise the initial page size and allows the user to start consuming content quickly.
Avoid page builders.
Page builders like Elementor or Beaver Builder are good for building creative layouts quickly, but there’s a trade-off with regard to page speed and load times.
The code generated by page builder plugins is generally more bloated and results in slower performance.
Avoid Image Sliders
Businesses have become so used to seeing big hero shots displayed as slideshows at the top of pages, that they believe it’s an essential design element.
This is NOT TRUE! Large image sliders are memory intensive and should be avoided. Most potential customers that land on your website have usually scrolled down the page or clicked to an inner page before the second slide has even started to appear.
Redirect chains can have a negative impact on performance and should be avoided.
If you absolutely must use redirects, make sure you keep the chain as short as possible by using only one or two redirects.
Leverage browser caching
Browser caching is when a user’s browser stores certain files from your website locally on their computer so that they don’t have to download them each time they visit your site.
This can help improve performance by reducing the number of requests that need to be made to the server.
You can leverage browser caching by adding some code to your .htaccess file or using a plugin like WPRocket if you’re using WordPress.
Use a content delivery network (CDN)
A content delivery network is a system of distributed servers that deliver webpages and other content to users based on their geographic location.
This can help improve performance by delivering your content from a server that is closer to the user’s physical location.
There are many different CDN providers, but some of the more popular ones include Cloudflare, BunnyCDN.
Use a good web hosting company
Your web host has a big impact on your website’s performance. Make sure you choose a reputable web hosting company with fast servers and good customer support.
Some of the best web hosts for WordPress websites include WP Engine, SiteGround, WPX and Cloudways.
Improve your server response time
Your server’s response time is the amount of time it takes for your server to process a request from a visitor and start sending them the content they’ve requested.
The faster your server responds, the better your website’s performance will be.
There are a number of ways you can improve your server response time, but some of the more common ones include using a faster web server, optimizing your database, and using caching.
Test your website on different devices and screen sizes
See how your website looks and feels at different screen resolutions. Use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool to see if your website is mobile-friendly.
There are currently well over 5 billion mobile phone numbers in the world and counting. If you have a global audience this is a huge potential market that you cannot afford to ignore.
If you’re looking for a reliable company to deliver a high performing responsive website call us now on (08) 6118 0272 or complete the contact form.