Why mobile first website design is important and how to create one
It’s been a few years since Google has made the shift over to mobile-first indexing. But many website owners which may include yourself haven’t made the change to shifting over to a mobile-first website design. So today I intend on highlighting to you the importance and urgency you face to ensure your website is mobile-first ready as you could be missing out on potential Google SERP Positions.
What is Mobile First Website Design?
To fully understand mobile website design, I need to explain to your the various methods used to achieved mobile-friendly website design. Below I will outline the different techniques used by website designers.
Accelerated Mobile Pages
Google has now developed AMP – Accelerated Mobile Pages for you to use to provide the mobile visitor to your website with specifically designed mobile pages with speed and performance in mind. AMP also allows you to take advantage of elements such as:
Web Stories allows your website articles created on an AMP format to be displayed within the top of Google SERP Results. Web stories engage your readers more easily with the clear and engaging design but most importantly fast and effective webpage load times.
You can also take advantage of AMP Emails when you have created AMP pages of your website for mobile visitors. This allows your email marketing campaign to include AMP elements within your emails to help make them more engaging and will enable you to have the latest app functionalities within emails.
How to take advantage of AMP
To include AMP on your website, you have different levels you can have on your website. You can create a complete AMP website which would require a professional website developer. But alternatively, you can use tools such as AMP for WordPress, which is a much easier alteration to your current website to take advantage of AMP.
Responsive Website Design
Responsive website design is the solution most current website use if they have not taken advantage of the latest AMP technology. Responsive website design term was first established by Ethan Marcotte. But Audi was the first website to include responsive website design back in 2001.
Responsive website design has now become a standard for all website developers. Firstly viewports are used which need to be set within the HTML of the website. Depending on the device screen size being used to view your website, a specific layout will be displayed to best suit the screen size of the device being used. Sometimes to achieve a Responsive website design, you will need to take advantage of CSS Media queries, these are simple filters which you can apply to your CSS styles. This makes it easy to change styles based on the device rendering your content.
Why is Google Now indexing Mobile First Website Design?
Google is now indexing website using Mobile First, this has become the new standard for an apparent reason. Back in 2016, mobile and tablet use surpassed desktop users. Since then, it has only been growing, which forced Google to change the way it determined which website should be ranked higher.
Now with Mobile First indexing, Google is checking your mobile version of your website for Google ranking. Therefore if your website is not mobile-first ready, you could be losing out on search traffic.
Back in July 2019, Google moved to the new default mobile-first indexing so you may have noticed a drop in search ranking if your website is not mobile-first ready. I would strongly advise spending the time to optimise and redesign your website to meet these criteria as soon as possible.
Easy Ways you can create Mobile First Website Design
Depending on which CMS platform you are using for your website, there is various methods and tools you can use to ensure your website is mobile-ready and responsive for mobile users.
If you are using the WordPress CMS, I would suggest ensuring the website theme you are using is already mobile response. Most theme designers are already ahead of the game and insuring their theme is mobile responsive.
I would also recommend using WordPress builders such as Elementor which will allow you to create great looking websites which are mobile responsive. These tools also allow you to create a custom mobile layout and designed to ensure your mobile website is displayed exactly as you like it.
Out of the box, the standard Magento theme is using the RWD approach and ensure your website is responsive. As expected, the main factor to mobile responsive design is stylesheets. Magento has created excellent documentation on how to use and edit the standard Magento theme such as breakpoints. If you are using the standard Magento theme is would certainly suggest checking out the Magento Development Documents.
Like all CMS, you can also purchase ready responsive Themes from the Magento store.
Inconclusion you will now understand why it’s essential to design your website with mobile first in mind. Due to current statistics, it’s clear it’s worth your effort to ensure your new or existing website is mobile ready. With the information stated in this article, I hope you now have a better understanding of mobile first website design and why website designers have had to change their approach to designing websites. Please feel free to ask me questions within the comments below, I am always happy to share my knowledge.