Did you know that:
- On an average, mobile phones generate 52.2% of the total internet traffic?
- Mobile e-commerce sales were $3.56 trillion by the end of 2021?
- 92.1% of internet users access the internet using a mobile phone?
I know these facts are not commonly heard. Indeed, popularity of mobile phones is increasing by the day.
So in this article, I am going to show you how to use the Google Mobile Friendly Test tool and some effective ways you can make your website mobile friendly.
Google is notorious for frequently bringing newer updates to it’s search results mechanism. A website ranking number 1 on Google for a keyword can easily be demoted to number 4 or 5 after a new update, highly impacting the organic traffic of that website.
So when Google comes to know that mobile phones are gaining huge popularity, BOOM, there comes a new update on April 21, 2015.
The Google’s mobile-friendly update was an effort by Google to boost the rankings of pages which were mobile-friendly.
- Affects only search rankings on mobile devices
- Affects search results in all languages globally
- Applies to individual pages, not entire websites
In such a case, you have to work toward making your website mobile friendly as more than 50% of your website traffic will be coming from mobile devices.
What Is A Mobile-Friendly Website?
A mobile-friendly site is one that has been optimized for viewing on a user’s mobile device (such as a tablet, smartphone, or iPad) and is simple to use without requiring the user to actively zoom in or change their settings.
The text is simple to read, the touch targets are spaced appropriately, making it simple for someone to find what they’re looking for.
How To Use Google Mobile Friendly Test?
There are various ways you can check the mobile friendliness of your website. The best of them is the Google Mobile Friendly Test. Who better than Google to check your website for mobile friendliness?
After all, it’s Google that all of us trying to flatter.
So how do you use the Google Mobile Friendly Test?
- Enter your website’s domain name. Make sure that the URL tab is selected
Note: You should check each of your new posts or pages as you publish them. So enter the particular page URL or the post URL if you want to do that.
- You will see a page like below if your page is mobile friendly
What’s more, you will have the option to view the tested page in the form of a screenshot (shown below)
Just click on the View Tested Page button and select the screenshot tab on the next page.
Alternatively, if your website isn’t mobile-friendly, then you will see something like this:
Along with your mobile-friendly test results, the Google mobile friendly test will also describe the issues that are leading to the non-mobile friendliness of your website. The most common reasons are:
- Text too small to read
- Clickable elements too close together
Don’t worry! In the end I will be discussing some effective ways to make your website mobile-friendly.
Why Should You Have A Mobile Friendly Website?
If you didn’t read the facts in the beginning of this article, I want you to scroll back up and read those facts.
You will find that a mobile friendly design is a must for websites these days.
Have you ever visited a website and you were not able to read the text? Did you have to zoom in to be able to read the contents? Or did you ever click the wrong link accidently just because clickable links were too close together?
Same goes with your readers. Your website should provide them a seamless experience without any difficulties in browsing through your website.
You ought to consider the user experience. UX is important to both users and search engines when it comes to viewing and ranking a website. For instance, your website must be mobile-friendly in order to rank on Google’s mobile index.
User experience improvements and higher search rankings are primary advantages that pave the way for secondary advantages like higher traffic and sales. When we add together all the benefits of a mobile-friendly website, we may think of tertiary advantages like gaining ground on rivals and being seen as forward-thinking and innovative.
Ranking on Google already is a tough battle which many fail to win. So you don’t want a small thing like non mobile responsiveness to be the reason for the loss of potential traffic to your website.
I call it a small thing not because it doesn’t matter much (It matters a lot). But because it is not a challenging task to make your website mobile-friendly.
How To Make Your Website Mobile Friendly?
There are many ways you can make your website to pass the Google Mobile Friendly Test:
Use an appropriate font size
Remember, a font size may be perfect for a desktop screen but the same font size can be difficult to read on a mobile device. I recommend using at least 15px as your font size as it is easy to read on both desktop as well as mobile devices.
A size below that will work fine with desktop but may create problems in the mobile version.
I personally use 17px as my font size.
Give appropriate line spacing
Line spacing is the gap between two lines. Here also, a default line spacing will work fine on desktop but will make it difficult for mobile viewers to read the text.
I use a line spacing of 2.5px on my website and it works perfectly fine.
Utilize a simple website design
On any screen, cluttered, complex websites might appear confused. However, using a mobile device to navigate them is particularly difficult.
Use a simple, minimalist layout for your website. This will hugely impact how your website performs in any mobile friendly test.
Visitors may easily locate and obtain the content they need on their mobile device of you have a simple design.
A simple approach to website design can also help websites load more quickly.
Avoid pop-ups and text blocking ads
Ever visited a website filled with ads and pop-ups? Sometimes even the option to cancel or hide the pop-up is not visible. Or there are so many ads that you can barely read the text.
What would I do if I ever come across such a website? It’s simple. I’ll leave it.
You don’t want your visitors to leave your website, do you? Even if ads are a source of revenue for your website, it doesn’t mean you fill your site with them.
Who’s gonna buy from you or click through your Google ads if everyone is leaving your website?
Use mobile-friendly plugins
If you are using WordPress, then you can’t imagine your life without plugins. Am I right?
But make sure that your plugins are mobile friendly and updated. If any of your plugins fail to be compatible with the mobile version of your website, then it can create a bad user experience.
Also, there are several plugins that make your website automatically mobile friendly without needing much work from your side. One such famous plugin is the WPTouch plugin. It’s a WordPress plugin that makes your website mobile responsive without much efforts from your side.
However, font size and line spacing are some things you need to manage on your own.
Increase your website speed
The speed of websites is one of the main problems with mobile. With Google PageSpeed Insights, it’s simple to learn about and get suggestions for how to speed up your mobile site.
This tool will provide you specific suggestions on how to improve your website’s responsiveness for different device kinds.
In 2010, Google announced a new signal in their search ranking algorithms: page speed.
In July 2018, page speed became a ranking factor for mobile searches.
So should you bother optimizing for page speed? Absolutely!
This deals more with user experience and it will affect your bottom line: Revenue.
Google performed a study on 11 million mobile ads and found that as page load time goes from 1 to 3 seconds, the probability of bounce increases by 32%. And as the load time increase even further, the probability of bounce also increases.
So improving your website speed will go a long way in helping you to achieve your targets.
Add a back-to-top feature
When users scroll down to read your information on your webpages and blog posts, you should provide a “Back to Top” button.
By including this small function, it will be simpler for users to return to the top of the page without having to laboriously scroll up. People are engaged and goodwill is increased by such modest details. Even when there are other sources, your audience will want to return to your website.
The Google Mobile Friendly Test Tool is a wonderful way to know whether your website is fit for mobile devices and pinpoint what is wrong with your website.
With increasing popularity of smartphones, it has become very crucial for websites to be mobile responsive. Over 52% of the internet traffic coms from mobile devices like smartphones, tablets, and iPads.
No matter how wonderful and useful your content is, if your website looks like a mess when it is visited on mobile devices, then it puts a bad impression on both the user and search engines. Hence, all your high-quality content is rendered useless.
There are various ways you can make your website mobile friendly and trust me they are no rocket science.
If you found this article helpful, consider sharing it with your friends and the people you think might benefit from it.
Wish you all the best!
Ali is a passionate and experienced blogger with a mission to teach others how to start their own blog, monetize it, and become successful in the process. He shares the lessons he’s learned on his own journey through personal anecdotes and factual examples.