Mobile internet usage is expanding as fast as the iPad 2 is selling. Now more than ever, it has become clear that online presence for the business doesn’t stop at 1024×768 screen resolution. If you want to reach the crowds, you have to go mobile. But this requires a different state of mind.
As we learned while working on our upcoming line of templates for the soon to be released Wix Mobile, mobile web design embodies a new set of challenges and complexities – A completely different user experience, different functionality and expectations.
Hoping you’ll soon be creating your own Wix Mobile Websites we decided to share some of our insights and observations.
Facing the New Measures
The number one challenge of mobile web design is fitting all the content you need to a small screen. How do you get the most out of the new work space?
- An everlasting scroll is exhausting on a mobile phone, not to mention bad for business. Your ideal mobile website will offer the visitor all vital information directly on entering the site.
- Use significantly less content than you would for a regular website: less text, less images, less media. You will need to learn how to write better and more effective copy using lesser words and how to get your point across using a minimal set of visuals.
- Split content on separate pages and create a convenient flow between them.
It’s not only the size of the website that should be trimmed. Mobile devices have much fewer technical abilities than computers and can’t handle the same streams of data, not to mention the costs involved!
- The file sizes that you upload to your mobile site need to be reduced. Use lower image resolutions, shorter videos and simpler visuals.
- Don’t auto-play or auto-download anything on your mobile site.
- Use only the slimmest formats for the files you upload.
Clear & Simple Flow
It’s critical that you keep navigation as intuitive and as smooth as possible on your mobile site. Before creating a mobile site, make sure you have a very clear idea of how visitors will be exploring it.
- Before you start designing, draw yourself a plan that sketches the visitor’s path through your site. Where do they go to from the homepage? How do they continue explore? How do they go back and forth?
- The cleanest and most convenient design for a mobile site is the one column design. Don’t make any plans to expand horizontally.
- Make sure your navigation buttons appear clearly across the site.
- Try to reduce the number of actions your site requires from the user, for instance, by creating shortcuts for dialing or texting.