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In many respects you will probably want to keep your mobile website design the same or very similar for your mobile website as for your normal desktop site. There are, however, several key differences that need to be taken into account when designing a mobile site. Here we’ll be taking a look at the three most important elements unique to mobile website design, and how you can take advantage of them to build a fantastic mobile site.
One of the considerable differences with using a mobile or tablet device to a laptop or desktop computer is that the screen size is far smaller. This needs to be taken into account when designing for mobile for several reasons, the first of which is appearance. Just because you have space for your current layout on a 40cm monitor doesn’t mean that it will fit onto a mobile screen.
Also consider that when a visitor uses your site on a mobile device, they will be navigating with fingers and thumbs, so be sure to adjust your icons to a suitable size relative to screen size.
Next, simplicity is key when designing for mobile. This kind of relates to the first issue of screen size, but it also importantly affects the speed that your mobile site will load at. Mobile devices are used on the go, and this means that the connection is rarely reliable. As such, loading times can be one of the biggest issues with mobile website design, and simple design is one of the best solutions.
Finally, your mobile website should be functional, and pleasant to the user. Your scaled back site should focus on menus, and other icons for navigation for making the visitors experience easy when adapted to a mobile, handheld platform. You can also consider more advanced design elements, hidden menus for example. A hidden menu comes into view when you scroll over the part of the screen where it appears, and then once you scroll away the menu fades out, or moves off the side of the screen to give you more space for your content.