Keys to the Perfect Mobile Website

KM3 LogoSimplify Your Design

The small screen size of mobile browsers demands a different approach than desktop website design. Clear, simple designs work best, preferably in a single column, as most users don’t want to be scrolling sideways across a page as well as up and down. Pages should not be cluttered or crammed with too much information. The use of white space can help achieve a clean, unfussy look and make your mobile-optimized site clearer and more navigable.  Take notice of now nicely our mobile virtual tours load!

Optimize Your Content

Almost invariably, they don’t want to read a lengthy mission statement, detailed staff biographies, or learn that you’re a great equal opportunities employer. By all means include links to the full version of your website where you can cram in as much information as you like. When thinking of mobile usage, however, think primarily of functionality.

Make Navigation Easier
 
Users do not want to be clicking through numerous pages and it’s usually best to put the most important information and functions on the opening page where possible.

When other pages do have to be accessed you should make the process of navigation as simple as possible. Don’t forget that the small screen size of mobile browsers is not ideally suited for clicking on small items. Many mobile devices use a finger as the primary input device and this can be considerably less accurate than a mouse cursor when it comes to clicking the correct button or link. Clearly marked, reasonably large buttons are generally far better than tiny hotspots, clickable images, or embedded text links.
 
Similarly, it can be useful if you minimize the amount of text a visitor has to enter in order to achieve her goal. Using dropdown menus, checklists, and pre-populated fields as a means of data entry can all help minimize the amount of typing a visitor has to do on a small handheld keyboard and streamline the visit.
 
Minimize Load Times 
 
If you’ve already simplified your design, that will also reduce load times but there are a number of additional things to bear in mind. Flash might be great for regular websites, but too much animation can have a major effect on load times. Not to mention the fact that Apple products do not support Flash at all – a big deal considering the iPhone is 30 percent of the smartphone market. Java can also be a huge drag on load times. It’s often better to simply do away with animations and automatically-starting video and audio effects altogether.

Large, high-resolution images can also affect load times. Consider whether all your images are necessary. Do they add anything essential or are they just decorative? Ensure any images you do use are sized and optimized for the mobile format.  Our HTML 5 mobile virtual tours do exactly this.  When a  user is on a mobile device we serve up a mobile version of our presentation using smaller images, smaller videos and so on and so forth. This keep our HTML 5 virtual tour load times down across mobile platforms.

Make Your Brand Recognizable
Your mobile-optimized site is likely to be considerably different to your regular site, but a customer who visits both should still feel they stem from the same source. Logos, tone of content, and other branding elements should carry over from one site to the other. This will help to make a strong impression on new visitors and add a sense of familiarity to repeat customers – the single most important asset a business can have.  If you’re reading this on a mobile device click here to sample one of our mobile virtual tours: http://www.732lakefrontdrive.com

If KM3 Media can help you determine if mobile websites are right for you, please email us at kyle@km3media.com, call us at 916-517-0029 or visit our website at www.km3media.com. We would love to help!

Kyle Murphy
Owner / Virtual Tour Provider
KM360 Virtual Tours
SLO Virtual Tours – A Sacramento Virtual Tour Company
Order a Virtual Tour: 805.709.5577