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Over the past few years the dominance of mobile browsing has hit its peak, with now more of us spending more time browsing on mobile or tablet devices than fixed home PCs or laptops. The result of this when it comes to web design is that mobile website design has become integral to every business online. In this post we will look at some of the basic principles for creating a stunning and functional mobile site.
One core trait for mobile sites which are less relevant when building a desktop ready site is speed. Unlike a fixed static connection at home, browsing on the move can be inconsistent, and is generally slower to load. In order to minimise the effect of this, there are many steps a web developer can take, including being more efficient with design elements, being minimal with media like high resolution photos and videos is also key.
When designing your mobile site you should be economic with every choice you make. If there is ever an element which seems inessential, then cut it out. You need to prioritise performance by only using design elements which serve a purpose.
When designing for mobile, it’s more important than ever to make sure that all of the features work effectively. Take advantage of design elements like hidden menu screens, where possible opt for horizontal rather than vertical scrolling, and be sure to remove any unnecessary tools.
Here it is also essential that you focus on scaling for each page of your site. If your audience constantly needs to zoom in and out, they may quickly get tired.
Last but not least, mobile design needs to be finger (and thumb) friendly. This means ensuring that all icons and buttons are large enough to click on by hand (or leaving space between icons). Be sure to pay particular attention to the menus on your website, especially the fixed menu that remains on every page of the site. If your users struggle to click onto the page that they’re looking for, this can be very frustrating and is likely to be a turn off.