Mobile Responsive Web Design Challenges in 2021

RWD major challenge these days is testing your content on all Mobile browsers and provide a seamless user experience. The desktop side of RWD that will fit and scale inside a desktop browser is relatively easy as there are no more that 3-5 different types of browsers.

On the mobile side, its entirely a different story as there are 10 + mobile browsers out there in the wild (default + installed). The user might view the website appropriately in the desktop version, but when the same website is viewed through his mobile phone, it’ll look odd and janky. What you need is a “device” plan of attack. Know which device classes you intend to support before you start to code and create content.

Have both your lowest common denominator devices and your high-end device designs before you begin to code. Try to visualize a way to create both versions from one code base and Test on different mobile devices from the beginning to the end to ensure that your incremental work will display correctly in the intended devices. Its good to have a small design lab where you can set up all these mobile devices and test your content. Designing and supporting multiple mobile displays takes time and patience. Responsive Design includes the use of CSS3 Media Queries, which is supported by almost all modern browsers and it reactively determines the screen size of a device and then renders the content appropriately on the screen layout. With a set of media queries, you will be able to display different layouts on different devices.

After successfully making your website responsive, you need to perform responsive test online on multiple devices like Mobile Phones, Tablets, Laptops, Desktops to ensure the responsive web design and that content and images are adapting themselves as per the screen size in which they are being viewed on. A good plan is half of your success. This is why planning ahead every little part of your responsive website design is crucial.

Website Bounce Rates…Three Second Rule…

Three second rule: 57 percent of online shoppers will wait three seconds or less before abandoning a site. Website page speed is crucial.

Ideally, websites load within three seconds, or two seconds if it’s an eCommerce site. The two-to-three second mark is the turning point where bounce rates skyrocket. Some 40% of consumers will wait no more than three seconds before abandoning a site. if a website funnel isn’t converting, or it breaks down somewhere (leaks) in the middle, a website designer needs to figure out where the Google Analytics metrics drop off.

Financial Advisors: Optimizing Your Website for Mobile in 2021

First thing to do is ask whether mobile visitors are interacting with your website differently than desktop users? It’s important for your website to work well on mobile devices, so if you haven’t yet invested in making your website mobile-friendly, it’s time to do so

Mobile optimized websites tend up higher in search results. With the rise if modern more powerful smartphones and tablets, mobile searches make up more than half of searches on Google.com.

  • Go into Google Analytics and segment out the mobile traffic. The mobile segment might include Tablet traffic so be aware of that figure. Once you have the data, focus on landing pages, conversion rate, and where people leave the conversion funnel. Optimize accordingly.

Responsive web design has made it possible to create sites that work across all platforms on an even play level. Mobile optimization has begun to gain credence as a potentially preferable strategy now in 2021. Instead of simply compressing and slightly rearranging the content on the screen, you design the entire experience for smaller screens. A good basic mobile optimized website should include the following:

  • Keep layouts simple and invest in responsive theme templates.
  • Use large, mobile-friendly calls-to-action and links.
  • Use large, easy-to-read text.
  • Keep forms as short as possible.
  • Clearly display your CTAs. Your CTA needs to focus on that primary goal.
  • Avoid large blocks of text and choose the right font.
  • Use large, clear images or buttons and reduce file sizes. Buttons need to be large enough to be tapped with a finger. Make sure you keep enough space between buttons so someone doesn’t accidentally click the wrong one.
  • Simplify your menus including the Search function.

Finally, prioritize speed. The best way to keep your page speed loading time as low as possible is by simplifying your design.

Tip: Its always a good idea to add a mobile XML sitemap and submit it to Google and Bing. Although, if the website is responsive, it’s not necessary to have the separate XML sitemaps for Mobile. I don’t think it’s not required as per Google’s guideline. When there are pages of similar content on desktop and mobile, they need to be interlinked by canonical tags so that google knows what is the alternative page for that, and automatically crawl and give equal importance to the other page which is still not there on the sitemap.

What is a Website Funnel?

A Website Funnel is basically an action you create to attract visitors (SEO, Social Media, PPC campaigns, Email opt-in, YouTube channel) to your website and guide them to take some sort of desired action like fill out a contact form (client leads), buy a book (Amazon link), or an actual product (add to shopping cart).

At the top of the funnel comes “awareness” followed down by interest>desire>action

Creating a perfect website funnel is literally an art form. A web designer has to be super creative and know the audience. Knowledge of of the process includes creating & mapping landing pages, CTA (Call to Actions), trip wires, product pages, image optimization, keywords, blog posts, etc.

Finally, if a website funnel isn’t converting, or it breaks down somewhere (leaks) in the middle, a website designer needs to figure out where the Google Analytics metrics drop off. Analytics is one of the best ways to measure your site’s performance, and can identify which part of the funnel isn’t working.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Crawl Terms

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If you or an out-sourced SEO “agency” ever crawled your website for an SEO audit, the following terms will eventually come up. Get to know them and how they relate to your website. Its crucial as all of them affect SEO rankings.

Title Tag: Title tags—technically called title elements define the title of a document. Title tags are often used on search engine results pages (SERPs) to display preview snippets for a given page, and are important both for SEO and social sharing. Keep your titles under 55 characters, and you can expect at least 95% of your titles to display properly. Keep in mind that search engines may choose to display a different title than what you provide in your HTML. Titles in search results may be rewritten to match your brand, the user query, or other considerations.

Meta description: Meta descriptions are HTML attributes that provide concise explanations of the contents of web pages. Meta descriptions are commonly used on search engine result pages (SERPs) to display preview snippets for a given page. Optimal Length for Search Engines ~ Roughly 155 Characters. These short paragraphs is your opportunity to advertise content to searchers and to let them know exactly whether the given page contains the information they’re looking for. Tailor the Meta description to each webpage instead of a generic description.

HTTP Status Code: HyperText Transfer Protocol (or HTTP) response status codes are returned whenever search engines or website visitors make a request to a web server. These three-digit codes indicate the response and status of HTTP requests.

Referrer: The HTTP referrer is an HTTP header field that identifies the address of the webpage that linked to the resource being requested. By checking the referrer, the new webpage can see where the request originated.

Link Count: High link count is good. Make sure some of the links go outside your website to other resources.

Content-Type Header: text/html; charset=UTF-8 is good! Choose UTF-8 for all content and consider converting any content in legacy encodings to UTF-8. A Unicode-based encoding such as UTF-8 can support many languages and can accommodate pages and forms in any mixture of those languages, etc.

4XX (Client Error): If you get one of these errors, the description says that this is either bad or a broken link on your page. Find the URLs that cause the error.

5XX (Server Error): This group of HTTP status codes indicates that the server is aware that it is on error or is incapable of performing the request. The server response usually includes an explanation of the error situation and if it is a temporary or permanent condition.

Title Missing or Empty: This is a no-brainer. You need to have Titles for each webpage on the website.

URLs with Duplicate Page Content: Duplicate page content is bad. Never have duplicate page content or Google will penalize!

Duplicate Page Title: Same with Duplicate Page Titles. No duplicate page titles Google will penalize.

URLs with Duplicate Title Tags: No duplicate URLs or Title Tags. Google will penalize.

Long URL: Keep them short. Never long URLs.

Overly-Dynamic URL: A URL that results from the search of a database-driven Web site or the URL of a Web site that runs a script. In contrast to static URLs, in which the contents of the Web page do not change unless the changes are coded into the HTML, dynamic URLs are generated from specific queries to a site’s database.

301 (Permanent Redirect): Redirection is the process of forwarding one URL to a different URL.

302 (Temporary Redirect): Redirection is the process of forwarding one URL to a different URL.

Meta Refresh: Generally it’s not good for SEO, as in it doesn’t really pass link equity. So, if the crawl test says you don’t have any, then that’s a good thing.

Title Element Too Short: Don’t have them too short (just like the rapper!).

Title Element Too Long: Don’t have them too long <insert funny joke here>.

Too Many On-Page Links: Keep them low as to not look like spam.

Missing Meta Description Tag: Basic thing. Need them on every page. The description should optimally be between 150-160 characters.

Search Engine blocked by robots.txt: All pages are open (indexed) to Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc., to search your webpages. You MAY want certain webpages blocked due and not crawled by search engines, but that’s up to you and the content you choose to block.

Blocked by meta-robots: Some might blocked and some might not be blocked. Sometimes a meta robots block comes from your CMS or something in your header. Always check on the pages that show as blocked to see if there’s any noindex sort of code in those pages.

Meta Robots Tag: The robots exclusion protocol (REP), or robots.txt is a text file webmasters create to instruct robots (typically search engine robots) how to crawl and index pages on their website. In most cases, meta robots with parameters “noindex, follow” should be employed as a way to to restrict crawling or indexation.

Blocking Google: If all are No then its good! You do not want to block Google as its good for content to be seen.

Blocking Yahoo: If all are No then its good! You do not want to block Yahoo as its good for content to be seen.

Blocking Bing: If all are No then its good! You do not want to block Bling as its good for content to be seen.

Google Search Algorithm Updated Today

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The update will reward mobile-friendly responsive websites.

When designing your website in accordance to this new mobile-friendly update, make sure you do a little research (using Google Analytics data Mobile > Devices report, with ‘Screen Resolution’ set as a secondary dimension) on your website traffic characteristics. Instead of serving everyone, find out which screen sizes people usually use on your website and design accordingly.

Responsive design is the idea that you can deliver website content regardless of screen size.

Responsive Web Design Challenges = Mobile

RWD major challenge these days is testing your content on all Mobile browsers. The desktop side of RWD that will fit and scale inside a desktop browser is relatively easy as there are no more that 6-7 different types of browsers.

On the mobile side, its entirely a different story as there are 40 + mobile browsers out there in the wild (default + installable). What you need is a “device” plan of attack. Know which device classes you intend to support before you start to code and create content. Have both your lowest common denominator devices and your high-end device designs before you begin to code. Try to visualize a way to create both versions from one code base and Test on different mobile devices from the beginning to the end to ensure that your incremental work will display correctly in the intended devices. Its good to have a small design lab where you can set up all these mobile devices and test your content. Designing and supporting multiple mobile displays takes time and patience.

Product (or Services) Launch Essentials for Start-Ups, Retail, Brick and Mortar

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  • Social Media. Set up a refresh of your Facebook page, send out product launch tweets (schedule tweets 24 hours a day), create a LinkedIn group, create a webinar (webinars are huge right now, and they are the easiest way to connect with your audience). If your in retail, use Groupon. If you have a physical location your customers frequent, utilize geolocation tools like Foursquare. Make sure your business is already discoverable on geolocation apps.
  • Website refresh. Create new product-specific landing pages, feature photos (.png’s), blog content, online collateral. Adjust and enhance your website meta tags/keywords to reflect new product information. Dont forget your social sharing buttons (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc) on all website content.
  • Review copies (product launches). Reach out to influential bloggers + online publications. Send them copies 1-2 weeks before launch with an embargo date. Make sure you have some type of “blogger relations” program at least 6 months before launch. Relationship building with bloggers is key. Get to know them, comment on their blogs, reach out to them and introduce yourself way before your launch.
  • PPC campaign. Stick to one advertising platform like Google Ads, Amazon local advertising, or Facebook ads.
  • E-mail marketing. Consider offering a pre-order for your new product, exclusive only to e-mail recipients. Or, offer a sneak peek at the new product before it’s released to the public. Use email software such as Constant Contact, MailChimp, ExactTarget, Emma Mail, AWeber, or InfusionSoft.
  • Press Release. If you have budget, use Business Wire. A cheaper alternative is PR Newswire. These PR distribution companies now are fully automated and support Social Media + mobile (iPad, smartphone) tools like analytics.
  • Work your ass off. Rather then using a ton of money, use time, energy and creativity.

After launch its crucial to measure your results. Go back and re-double efforts on which of the above techniques are working and abandon the ones that are not working.