Great strategies to make your website Mobile/Ipad efficient?
By Rock Paper Simple // September 16, 2012
I have a good question...
A colleague of mine asked the following question recently…
“I have a good question…what are some of the great strategies to make your website Mobile/Ipad efficient?”
Below is my answer to this question:
Great question! With the shift to more and more users browsing the web on their tablets and smart phones, the need for businesses to have their web compatible for these devices grows. Many are completely unprepared for this and are caught with websites that simply do not work or do not work well on these devices.
There are actually a few ways to tackle this one.
most obvious method is to have a separate “mobile” website
The first and most obvious method is to have a separate “mobile” website that your website visitors are forwarded to if they are using a mobile device. This is actually seen quite often. You typically have your web developer adapt your site or in some cases hire a company that specializes in mobile websites.
This mobile website is typically freestanding on a subdomain of the master website with its own content and layout. It and its content is typically managed separately from the master website.
The second and better option… …This means that your site will adapt and change shape depending on the type of device and screen size.
The second and better option is to ensure your website has what is called a “Responsive Design”. This means that your site will adapt and change shape depending on the type of device and screen size that your visitor is using. Basically what is done here is the layout and content remain basically the same, but a different stylesheet is loaded depending on your device size.
This new stylesheet can completely change the layout and visual aspects of the site to the extent of completely replacing buttons, images and content blocks with smaller versions of themselves.
This method works better because there is no worry of forgetting to update content on both websites and is going to overall be more efficient than having to manage two separate websites. You also have no worries about duplicate content SEO issues with this method.
This method is a little more involved and is typically done when the site is initially developed.
This is an expensive solution, but in some cases can be extremely powerful.
And finally, of course you can have an app developed for your company which can wrap up all of your website information and more… complete with geo-features, coupons, check-ins, online ordering, blog RSS, push notifications, etc. This is an expensive solution, but in some cases can be extremely powerful.
Also keep in mind that Flash content will not display on iPads or iPhones and can render a website completely useless on these devices. I suggest using jQuery when in need of some animation or movement such as a banner or slider.
Keep In Mind
Keep in mind that the mobile versions of websites are typically much more concise and to the point than their master versions. Even in the responsive design, elements and content can be hidden to allow for a much cleaner communication. And in some cases, responsive design can even be combined with the separate mobile site solutions and then tied dynamically into the master sites content database to make the best of both worlds.
Written by Joshua Adams at Rock Paper Simple
Joshua lives and breathes web development and internet marketing and is passionate about not only providing quality service, but also educating fellow business owners about internet marketing and web presence.