Mobile site design best practices – free guide from Google

Google mobile wesbite design guide

If your website is like most, then the share of visits from users on mobile devices compared to desktop browsers will have been showing unrelenting growth. You can easily see this in Google Analytics by looking at the Audience > Mobile > Overview report and then compare against the same period last year.

For lots of NZ websites, particularly those in B2C markets, 40% or more of their website traffic is now from mobile devices.

This, as we’ve mentioned many times before, is an ongoing trend being seen worldwide. Google now gets more searches from mobile devices than desktop computers which is why they’ve moved to a “mobile first” stance.

Mobile is now so important to Google that they’re switching their primary search index from desktop to mobile.

Having a mobile-friendly website is critically important. Not only to improve your visibility in Google search results, but also to ensure visitors on mobile devices can easily navigate and use the site. If they can’t, you’ll probably lose their business to competitors who do have mobile-friendly sites.

Given the above, many websites have been updated over the last year or so to be mobile-friendly. And the way this is normally achieved is by using a responsive design. This means that the site automatically reformats itself dynamically to fit different screen sizes.

It’s a great approach, but does mean that most websites are still built primarily from a desktop perspective, rather than mobile-first focus.

As a result, while sites may technically be mobile-friendly, they’re not necessarily designed optimally from the perspective of mobile USER experience.

The good news is that Google has recently undertaken a comprehensive research project with AnswerLab to establish mobile site design best practices. The results from this study have been documented in a free guide called “Principles of Mobile Site Design: Delight Users and Drive Conversions”. You can download the guide as a PDF and I highly recommend you check it out.

Why should you care?

You will if you want to ensure your business has an effective mobile presence.

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About the Author Mark Sceats

Mark is a Partner and Senior Consultant at SureFire which he founded back in 2002. Prior to establishing SureFire he worked for KPMG Consulting. Today Mark heads up SEO, embracing the challenges that can come with complex website implementations. Outside of work, his interests beyond his family are running, snowsports, diving and fishing (badly).

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