Do you know if your website is mobile-friendly or ‘responsive’ to varied devices including desktop, laptop, tablet and mobile phone?

I can suggest two helpful online tools for gauging at a glance just how useful and ‘friendly’ your website really is to the expanding audience on mobile devices.

But first –  why would that matter to you? Are we just talking about how your site LOOKS?

Sure, you want it to be readable on different devices but ‘readable’ is more than ‘visible’. According to Google, responsive websites must:

  • be designed so they load quickly on mobile devices
  • Content must be easily accessible by scrolling up and down — without having to also swipe to the left or right.
  • Ideally all buttons for making purchases or taking other actions on the website can be easily seen and touched on smaller screens

And of course, just how important this topic of ‘responsive’ really is…will depend on the purpose (and people) your website serves.

If your site is what’s called a ‘brochure’ page and nearly all visitors to the site come directly from other marketing links and print advertising and you are not relying on Google native search, this may not be too big an issue for you. (Unless your target audience are big-time mobile device users which across the board are said to represent about 35%-45% of all users online and can be higher for some niche markets or products.) If you are selling product or have competitors online you want to be thinking about this!

And wanna grow your business? If  you are hoping to get more online folks to search and find you…quickly and easily….AND you recognize that a good percentage of your audience are likely phone or tablet…..then how Google Search rewards or penalizes your domain listings might be important. Yes, in 2015, Google began down-grading search results based on the site’s ability to display as mobile-friendly.

Help from Google

Here is Google’s own tool to help you see how your domain stacks up against their criteria:

www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/

First, enter your domain url (name) and in less than a minute google will analyze and hopefully respond with Awesome! This page is mobile-friendly!

Or you may get: Not mobile-friendly – Page appears not mobile-friendly with additional tips like ‘text too small to read’ etc.

Take a look for yourself

As a site designer/developer and consultant helping folks figure out what they really need to accomplish their marketing programs, I like this tool:

Screenfly (http://quirktools.com/screenfly/)

You an use this application on your desktop browser to see exactly how your web page renders on specific devices including 6 tablets, 12 phones, and various size laptop screens and desktops.

We’ll discuss more on our next blog post about where to go next with updating your ‘responsive’ website behavior.

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