Mobile friendly websites have long been a priority for many businesses. We launched our first mobile site in 2010. Times have changed though. What do mobile friendly websites look like in 2017?
Early website development
Before I answer that, let’s consider our own mobile development. Back in the early noughties, we had a template based site – it had some good content, but was useless on desktop, never mind mobile. SEO was also non-existent. The site served a purpose, and got us started. It actually wasn’t too bad for the standards of the time.
A major redesign in 2006 was our first step towards a modern professional website. The site had a much more modern look and feel, although we still had static content.
The next stage was our first responsive design. This gave a better mobile experience, as the screen size was reflected in how the site displayed. It looked okay on mobile, and we started to receive some mobile traffic.
Our mobile domain
In 2010, we launched a mobile version of the site, using the .mobi domain. I wrote an article on the subject, entitled Better Languages at the forefront of website development. It was very cutting edge at the time. Of course technology continued to move forward. Within a couple of years, we dropped the mobile version. The reason for this was that the main site became more mobile friendly, and loaded much faster on handheld devices, giving a better user experience.
So what is happening with mobile friendly websites in 2017?
Our latest version of this site has special pages and posts optimised for mobile. They are known as AMP pages. If you are reading this post on a mobile, you will be viewing the AMP version. We are adding AMP content across the site. AMP stands for “accelerated mobile pages”, it’s a protocol specifically for mobile. The aim is to have very fast load speeds, and hence a better user experience. If you are on the AMP version, there is a link to the main site in the footer. We have plans to further enhance the AMP version, with better page layout, and images optimised for mobile.