What Does It Look For?In order to be considered mobile friendly, a website needs to load quickly and evenly across a wide range of devices and signal conditions. The Google Mobile Friendly Test looks for issues that prevent this, such as:
FlashMost mobile browsers don’t support Flash. Because mobile users won’t see that content, they can’t access the full site.
Viewport issuesIf the viewport isn’t configured to adjust for screen size or is fixed-width, it won’t display properly on all mobile devices.
Horizontal scrollingThis is not a natural movement. Vertical scrolling has become the standard on mobile, as well as desktop.
Content doesn’t scaleMobile sites shouldn’t be identical to desktop, but smaller. The content should adjust to the screen size when viewed on mobile.
Unsuitable font or textText should be clearly legible on a small screen without zooming in.
Touch elements are too closeButtons and links should be far enough apart to be easily usable by human fingers without the risk of accidentally hitting the wrong link.
Alternatives to the Google Mobile Friendly TestGoogle’s tool is one to watch, since it reveals how Google sees the site. However, there are other popular tools that help fine-tune a site’s mobile performance.
- BrowserStack: This powerful tool for testing mobile design creates screenshots of how a page looks on every device. The downside is that it loads a little slowly. Also, it’s a paid service (though it offers a lot of features for the subscription price).
- Keynote MITE: The free version of MITE offers a grade, like the Google Mobile Friendly Test, while higher subscription levels have an expanded suite of tools.
- W3 MobileOK Checker: Free and open source mobile tests will always have a place in development. This one not only identifies problems but separates them by severity and category.
Dealing With A Failing ScoreA “not mobile-friendly” rating should be a wake-up call. It doesn’t just mean the site won’t rate well. It means visitors who DO get there will have a bad experience. Users are five times more likely to abandon a site that isn’t optimized for mobile. Worse yet, because most mobile searches have timely intent, an unoptimized site can funnel customers straight to mobile-friendly competitors. Take the list of issues from the Google Mobile Friendly Test (and any other tools used) to a dependable developer as soon as possible. They can help redesign the site to provide a faster, more responsive experience for mobile users – and keep those users from switching to competitors.
How mobile friendly is your site? Concepta’s developers can talk you through your GMFT results and suggest other mobile-friendly technology like Progressive Web Apps. Set up your free consultation today!