How to Optimise a Website for Multi-Device Viewing

Web Development

Having a website is so important for all businesses to have an online presence in this digital age, but no longer is just having a website enough. Gone are the days where people only experience the internet on a desktop, people want information and they want it right now, on the go, using their mobile or tablet. The number of people viewing websites on their mobile or tablet is growing exponentially, and has been since 2007 when it represented a mere 0.7% of browsing activity. Now it represents upwards of 30% of overall traffic depending on industry.

How to check your own mobile traffic

Check it for yourself. Go into your Google Analytics account and go to Audience > Mobile > Overview. Check your engagement statistics like bounce rate, pages per session and average time on site for users on a mobile or tablet compared to desktop users. The fact is, if you don’t have a mobile friendly site you are losing sales… Because users are not just using mobiles to browse, they are actively looking to buy and make enquiries and if your site is not providing a good user experience in order to complete those tasks then I can guarantee that instead of pinching and zooming, visitors will be going straight back to where they came from and finding another provider.

Google thinks it’s important and so should you

What’s been referred to as “Mobilegeddon”, Google has recently updated their ranking algorithm to reward websites that are mobile friendly and rank them higher in search engines. Search engine traffic can be a huge sales/lead source for businesses and if you don’t stay up to date then you could start to lose this source of traffic to your site and the sales/leads that result from it.

Now you know how important it is, but what's next?

There are 3 options when making sure your website is mobile friendly:

  1. You edit your current site to be responsive. This is probably the cheapest option if you have a desktop site that you like and don’t need to upgrade. It involves editing the backend code of your site so that it adapts to whatever size screen a user is viewing it on.
  2. Upgrade to a responsive site If your desktop site was built a few years ago. It’s time for an upgrade anyway -- best is to upgrade your site to a responsive website that looks great and will help you achieve your business goals.
  3. Using a mobile site and redirecting users. This is probably the worst option but still better than not having a mobile friendly site. This involves having 2 different sites, a mobile friendly site and a desktop site. These sites have different content and different designs and the user is shown the appropriate site based on what platform they are viewing on. Sites using a domain are using this strategy, however having a completely responsive site is a better option and easier to manage.

Now you know how important this is, and how to get it up to date -- now it’s time to take action. The good news is that there are still a lot of businesses who have not kept up to date in this area so you can still get ahead of your competition. However, if you leave it too late, you will be left behind and your business will suffer because of it.

Marc Goodwin

Owner at Multiply Digital

I'm a digital marketing specialist keen on all things digital, especially search engine marketing and conversion rate optimisation. I run Berley Digital, where we help small businesses grow their presence online through digital marketing packages for a once off fee. I'm always open to having a chat so feel to drop me a line if you have any questions or just want to have a chat.