Most of us have known for a long time that people everywhere are increasingly accessing the internet on a range of devices. No longer is it safe to assume that a visitor to your company website will be using a traditional desktop or laptop computer – there is a good chance that she will be using a tablet or a handheld Smartphone.

Traditional websites, even those developed a few years ago, were not commonly formatted for mobile display, and do not render well on today’s modern devices. While some industries have been quick to respond by transitioning their company websites to mobile-friendly formats, many decision-makers are still not aware that this is an important issue which can affect the bottom-line of their businesses.

What is a Mobile-Friendly Website?

Generally speaking, a mobile-friendly website is a site that is designed to display properly on smaller screens, such as iPhone or Android smartphones, or intermediate sized tablets. Standard desktop websites do not render well on these devices, whereas a mobile-optimized site adjusts to the smaller screen size and formats the content and interface in a mobile-friendly manner, including:

  • Larger, easier to read text
  • Mobile-friendly navigation
  • Touch-friendly buttons and page elements
  • Faster download speed

Why is a Mobile-Friendly Website Important?

With more and more visitors accessing your company website on mobile devices, it is important to make sure that all of your visitors have a positive experience, regardless of what type of device they’re using to get there. If your website takes too long to download; or is not easy to use on a mobile device, they may move along to a competitor. Having a mobile-friendly website brings with it several key advantages, including:

  • Improved search visibility
  • Improved user experience
  • Increased lead generation
  • Improved brand identity

As of April 21, 2015, Google began giving preference to mobile-optimized sites in mobile search results. If even a small portion of your target visitors are on mobile devices, this could be quite significant for your online visibility. Ultimately, the better an experience you can provide for your mobile visitors, the better the chance they will convert into new business. You never know where or when your target visitor will arrive on your site, so it is important that your website is ready to work on any device they may be using, wherever they may be.

How Do I Know Whether Our Company Website is Mobile-Friendly?

Generally speaking, you will be able to tell whether your website is mobile-friendly if it scales to display content and navigation in a way that is optimised to be user-friendly on smaller screens. If you’re not sure, Google offers a Mobile-Friendly Test that makes it easy to check – simply enter your URL and Google will tell you whether or not your site fails or passes the test. If it passes – you are in good shape; if it fails, you should look into converting your site to a mobile-friendly format sooner rather than later.