Proven post installation tips for optimizing WordPress blog for mobile
Why further optimize a WordPress blog for mobile?
- Responsive WordPress Themes
- Responsive Plugins
- Website Speed
- Use AMP
- Resizing Images for Screen Sizes
- Avoid Adding Popups to Mobile Format
- No Flash Animations and Java
- Prepare for fat-finger syndrome
- Aim for Functionality
Mobile friendliness is a compulsory factor now since Mobilegaddon. Compatibility of a WordPress website to mobile is now a norm in development. Although the themes and plugins are responsive, yet some WordPress websites and blogs cannot qualify for being called as a mobile optimized site.
Why further optimize a WordPress blog for mobile?
You know it, yet you are lazy to admit. Mobile dominates a major percentage of internet time compared to desktop.
A cross-platform measurement company, ComScore’s research lead to the fact that 71% of the Americans spend their time using the internet on mobile devices. Indonesia by far is the most mobile engaged country.
If the maximum fraction of internet time is spent on mobile devices then why not optimize and super optimize the website to get higher returns.
The bloggers are concerned about their content first, then the platform they work on. Attracting traffic is their job and efficiently utilizing that audience is of their blog.
Smart bloggers test and leverage every aspect they can improve user experience, functionality, and engagement on their blog, and super optimizing their blog for mobile is one of those aspects.
Responsive WordPress Themes
Every WordPress theme is mobile friendly. They offer desktop site as well mobile site upon accessing from different screen sizes.
The tip with utilizing a responsive theme is to test themes relating to website type or niche type if possible.
For bloggers, WordPress theme directory offers various choices which are responsive, mobile optimized as well as designed for specific purpose.
Get your hands on demo first, then choose a mobile optimized theme.
For buying a premium theme (highly optimized for mobile and desktop with premium addons) you can visit developer’s website or online marketplaces like Envato.
There are a variety of plugins bloggers use. Some are executable on the backend and have effect on the front end, and some are meant to be on front end.
Below is a list of recommended responsive plugins for bloggers which play nicely on mobile screens too.
- Social Share Plugin – Helps in sharing blog content such as infographics, Presentations, blog posts, videos unlimitedly on social media.
- Calders Forms for creating responsive contact forms which look nice on every screen size.
- Responsive slider plugins – plugins from WordPress directory.
- Woocommerce – incase of creating a small shop in your blog.
Speed matters for mobile devices. Universally not all the mobile devices have high-speed internet source (Wi-fi, 4G, 3G). Due to this limit mobile optimizing a website becomes crucial.
To check website speed on mobile devices use tools like GTMetrix, Google Page Speed Tool.
They test speed for desktop as well as mobile and gives a score accordingly. See if your theme passed or not.
If you are confused about implementing the suggestions mentioned, check out these WordPress speed optimization tips for help.
AMP means Accelerated Mobile Pages. Name says it all.
AMP is a boon for bloggers. Readers can quickly read their articles on the go and in low bandwidth also.
Another benefit with AMP is that Google, which shares a huge piece in the pie of search engine domination, benefits AMP pages in its search results, hence huge benefit for bloggers using AMP.
Below is a list of few AMP Plugins for WordPress
- AMP for WP – Accelerated Mobile Pages
- Glue for Yoast SEO & AMP
- Better AMP – WordPress Complete AMP
- AMP Supremacy
- WP AMP – Accelerated Mobile Pages for WordPress
Resizing Images for Screen Sizes
Images on website are delivered in a particular size, which then gets resized by CSS Queries. Hence the images delivered on iPhone 5, iPhone 7 and iPad are of the same size but are resized using CSS, which slows a website from loading. Additionally it increases data consumption on mobile devices.
Adaptive Images is a plugin which resizes the images for real, instead of forcing a browser to render images like a small image.
For a blog, it can significantly increase page load time for blog posts.
Avoid Adding Popups to Mobile Format
Popups can become difficult to close on a mobile device, which can increase bounce rates on the site.
An event can occur where your super optimized popup can clash with cookie acceptance popup.
Google has also started penalizing blogs and other websites which show intrusive interstitials like opt-ins, which cover the content on the website. They include pop-ups (instant and scheduled popups ) and any other type of opt-in that a user must dismiss before accessing the content on the page.
No Flash Animations and Java
The first obvious reason is they take up data and time to load. No one has enough time to wait for animation or Java applet to load.
The Second and major reason is Apple products do not support flash and have no intention to use in future. Around 30% of the market is acquired by Apple, so using Flash can significantly affect users who use Apple products.
Prepare for fat-finger syndrome
It is not a disease but is a term for people who have big fingers and face difficulty in using a smartphone and keyboards.
Whichever theme we are using, the design should be easy to navigate with fingers of all sizes and shapes, considering all the mobiles are touch screen now.
A user should be able to select text, tap into form and fill it out, tap buttons without colliding with another button, share a blog post using share buttons easily and scroll up & down using side margin.
Most of us had been through this interface of Facebook at least once. Sorry Facebook, it is what it is.
Aim for Functionality
Mobile devices do not have a large area to populate all the elements of the desktop version. So choose elements of the homepage wisely.
Like if you have new posts, featured posts, posts by author, posts by categories all together on the homepage of desktop version then consider rearranging and displaying only a few for mobile version.
Rearranging page for mobile version helps in optimizing homepage for maximum visibility, hence providing a positive user experience.
Some themes offer selecting menus for mobile version of the theme.
These are some of the proven tips you can implement on your WordPress blog to optimize it for mobile devices.
I am looking forward towards your responses and experiences on AMP plugins. Feel free to comment them below.