DIY: Test your mobile site!

More than half of all internet traffic comes from mobile devices (fact). So if you are ignoring your mobile site, you might be missing out on half your audience. In this post, I’ll go over the way we check mobile sites in our website reviews. After this post, you’ll be able to check your mobile website yourself on key elements.

Use your phone to check your mobile site

Open your phone’s browser and go to your website. See how it looks. You didn’t see that advice coming, right..? I know of business owners that have never done this. They paid a shipload of money to create a mobile site but haven’t looked at it after their designer presented the design. Like Nike said: just do it. See what you are missing.

Things that you need to check on your mobile site:

  1. Top tasks. Make sure visitors can find your main pages in a heartbeat.
  2. Address and phone number. People use mobile websites of shops to set their navigation, for instance. If you want customers to find your store, list your address. If you want people to call you, this is the main call-to-action on your mobile site. Make it clickable.
  3. A working menu and a search option. It’s nice to add a hamburger menu as it saves space, but please make sure it folds out. Add a search option as a backup for your menu.
  4. Mobile design and UX. Make sure your mobile site is not just your entire website squeezed in that little screen. Toning it down colorwise also helps.
  5. Buttons and links. Make sure these are easy to spot and large enough to click.

Please find more information on this in our mobile UX article.

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Note that different phones will differ in how they present your website. For that very reason, we recommend checking the mobile version of  website in other ways as well to find flaws in your mobile site.

Google’s Mobile-friendly test

Test your mobile site: Mobile-Friendly-Test screenshotMobile-friendliness is a ranking factor. Google created a test tool, which makes it easy to see how Google sees your website. It comes with a nice scoring system, that tells you what to improve.

The Google Mobile-friendly test also shows a rendering of your mobile page. If that page looks like the one on the right, my guess is there is still work to do. Even if Google tells you your website is mobile-friendly. Remember that it’s an automated check. In our reviews, we check all the things in this article manually, just to make sure we’re not missing things. If you want to do these checks yourself, please do so as well. Sometimes common sense is much more valuable than what Google tells you 🙂

Let me elaborate on that:

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Web developer toolbar

You can also test your mobile site straight from your browser. In your Chrome browser, simply visit your own website and right-click somewhere on the browser screen. Click ‘Inspect’. After that, click the second icon in the inspector’s menu bar:

Test your mobile website: browser inspector mobile

This will open the website like in the screenshot above. It will allow you to see if your website is fit for multiple screens sizes. Firefox has a similar feature called responsive design mode.

When you select for instance any iPhone in that drop down, and it shows your entire website scaled down to fit the screen, you know your mobile site isn’t mobile-friendly. I tested this local Dutch website and found exactly that:

Test your mobile site: not mobile friendly example

Both tools give a clear advice to optimize that mobile website 🙂

Conclusion

If you want to check if your mobile site works at all, use the Inspect tool in your browser and Google’s mobile-friendly test. Check for a number of specifics if your website is fit for mobile devices, like top tasks and the size of your buttons. If you would like some more guidance in breaking up your design to fit multiple screens, please read this article on our development blog.

The checks mentioned above are also done in our website reviews. If you want pointers on how to optimize your entire website, including possible recommendations for your mobile site, buy your website review here.

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