Mobile devices—smartphones and tablets—have quickly become the primary way users access the Internet. So it’s imperative that your author website is designed to be accessible, easily navigable, and look good on these smaller screen devices. By optimizing your author website for smartphones and tablets, you’ll make it easier for visitors to move through your content as well as interact with your Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts.
7 Ways To Ensure Your Author Website Is Mobile-Friendly
1. Use A Mobile-Friendly Theme
Your website’s theme controls the aesthetic “look” of your site. Several big-name content management systems like WordPress and Joomla offer themes that have built-in mobile-friendly technology—they automatically adjust to the screen size your author website is displayed on.
2. Build Your Site Using Responsive Elements
Some elements of your author website can be “responsive.” These elements will respond to the dimensions or position of the screen on which they are being viewed and auto-adjust for optimum display. The most common elements that are responsive include headers, photo galleries, and navigation menus. Many mobile-friendly themes use these responsive elements.
3. Streamline Your CSS
When you customize the style of your site—the colors, borders, shadows, etc.—code is written on your site’s CSS, or cascading style sheet. Conflicts can arise when designers write extra code to change the look of particular elements, resulting in visible glitches. To avoid this complication, make sure any code written to your author website’s CSS is succinct. By avoiding redundancies, you reduce your site’s risk of displaying improperly on any device.
4. Choose A Larger Point Size For Your Text
Many mobile-friendly or responsive themes already feature larger typeface sizes and “fat-finger-proof” buttons. But if you are not using one of those themes (or are coding your site from scratch), it’s important to make sure the point size (pt) of your font is big enough to be legible on smaller mobile devices.
Pro Tip: When selecting which font to use, choose simple typefaces without intricate flourishes or designs. This will make your text much easier to read.
5. Avoid Using Pop-ups
While pop-ups are a great way to collect email addresses for your mailing list, they can be difficult to bypass on mobile devices. Often the button that closes the pop-up becomes too small to easily click when viewed on a smartphone. Instead, put your sign-up form in a sidebar. If you still want to have your pop-up appear, select a theme (or pop-up plugin) that automatically turns off pop-ups when visitors are looking at your site on a smartphone. Most mobile users don’t like typing on their devices anyway.
6. Make Sure Your Navigation Menu Is Mobile-Friendly
This point goes back to what we said about responsive elements. If your navigation bar remains the same size (to scale) on a mobile device as it is on a desktop, it may be difficult to read or click around on your site. Code your menu to appear as a single dropdown menu on mobile devices (this is where a mobile-friendly theme really does wonders).
7. Create A Separate Version Of Your Site Built Specifically For Mobile Users
If you’re feeling ambitious, you can create a separate version of your author website for mobile users. You may have seen this option on other sites when you’ve browsed the Web on your mobile device. A page will read, “Click for mobile version.” Creating an independent mobile site lets you feature the same elements as your traditional website but in a mobile-friendly way.
Mobile-Friendly Isn’t All About Design
If your author website is optimized for mobile browsing, then sharing your site’s content on social media will be especially easy. And since mobile users tend to share more content than desktop users, you’ll be a step ahead in building the reach and recognition of your author brand! Follow the tips mentioned here to create an author website that works on smartphones, tablets, and traditional desktops. Or ask Web Design Relief to design a mobile-friendly author website for you.
Photo by IntelFreePress
QUESTION: What is the most frustrating aspect of a website that isn’t mobile friendly?