Understanding Mobile Website Design

The internet was built for computers and this has meant that when designing a website the graphics layout and interactions are aimed at a person with a computer. This can make something that does not display well and is very difficult to use with many mobile devices. Even among mobile devices there is a huge difference in form factors, screen resolutions and sensitivity of touch screens. This is why mobile website design has become very important as there are now billions of devices that are web capable.

One Size Must Fit All Mobile Devices
In most cases mobile websites use designs that will dynamically size themselves to the screen they are viewed on. This means that the design needs to be very flexible so that the highest proportion of devices can view it. A common way to do this is to simplify the design compared to a traditional website bringing common function to the fore while still allowing other functions through deeper links of drop down boxes.

Navigation on Mobile Websites
The majority of devices that access the site will use touch screens so having intricate buttons that are fine with a mouse are definitely out. Clear, large buttons that are easy to be tapped with a finger are a must and a limited number of navigation choices works best when formulating a website design that is aimed at mobile devices.

Displaying Content on a Mobile Website
The core of a website is its content. A media website has to display its media and a sales website needs to display the products it has on display. A traditional website has the screen real estate to pack lots of content and many different items. A mobile website cannot do this in the same way, instead a mobile website needs to display a few items and give a simple way to move through the rest of the items. A one click solution to show the next page of items or line of items that can rotated through the viewing area are ways that you can incorporate into a mobile website design to handle this function.

The bottom line is making the website as user friendly as possible. This should be a top priority because a frustrated potential customer is frequently a potential customer that will go somewhere else.