Why And How You Should Optimize Your Website For Mobile Traffic

You’ll lose more than 50% of your potential customers if your website is not optimized for mobile web traffic!

More than half of the web traffic comes from tablets and mobile phones, so please don’t ignore the importance of optimizing your website to welcome web traffic from mobile devices.

If visitors to your website can’t easily access it on their phone or tablet, you’ve lost them as potential customers!

The balance has now officially tipped. Much more than half of the world’s web traffic now comes from mobile devices rather than PCs or desktop computers. The majority of web traffic is now from mobile devices with 3 billion people using smartphones compared to 1.3 billion who own computers.

This shift was inevitable, given recent trends, which have seen mobile web traffic on the rise since about 2012. Here are the latest figures on the worldwide increase in mobile web traffic.  

Mobile Web Traffic Statistics

14% Growth in Mobile Web Traffic

The number of mobile phone users worldwide from 2015 to 2020 has grown at a rate of 14% from 4.15 billion to 4.78 billion.

7-Fold Increase in Web Traffic

Mobile data traffic worldwide is projected to increase by nearly sevenfold between 2017 and 2022.

4 Billion Mobile Users

The world’s mobile population reached 4 billion unique users in April 2019.

48% of Web Pages Seen on Mobile Devices

Mobile devices accounted for 48 percent of web page views worldwide in February 2019.

Most Growth in Asian & African Web Traffic

Asia and Africa are leading the growth in mobile-first web traffic markets. Nigeria has the highest rate of internet traffic coming from mobile devices. India, Ghana, and Kenya are just behind.

97% Mobile Penetration

The highest mobile broadband subscription penetration rate in the world in 2019 was in The Americas (97.1%) and Europe (93.6%).

Source: Statistica

More Reasons to Optimize Your Website for Mobile Web Traffic

1. Google Prioritizes Mobile Web Traffic

According to Google, there are 27.8 billion more queries performed on mobile than desktop. As a result, Google now prioritizes search queries from mobile devices by serving up accelerated mobile pages in its search results.

To make sure your website has accelerated mobile pages, you can use Google’s AMP project to strip down your website’s content and make it more mobile friendly. These AMP versions will then be served to users who access your site using a mobile device.

If you use WordPress for your website, you can get the AMP for WordPress Plugin to automatically generate accelerated mobile pages.

2. Multiple Monetization Options from Mobile Web Traffic

Confidence among mobile users to spend money online is higher than ever. Shopping online and making other financial transactions used to be exclusively done from desktop computers, but these days many people use mobile devices to shop, book holidays, order takeout, buy apps, and more.

3. Staggering Mobile Shopping Statistics

More than 33% of Black Friday revenue comes from mobile orders, and the rate is increasing by about 5% each year.

Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday are the highest-grossing US e-commerce sales days, each generating about US$8 billion. At least 30% of those sales are done through mobile devices.

An estimated 1.8 billion people worldwide have purchased goods online. Close to 50% of all e-commerce retail in the US comes from mobile purchases.

10 Ways to Optimize Your Website for Mobile Traffic

1. Use Responsive Website Design

Your priority should be to have a website that’s easy to see and navigate on a mobile device like it is on a desktop computer or laptop.

The ability for a website to recognize when it’s being seen on a mobile device and adapt the layout is called responsive design.

So if you’re designing your website or having a designer do it for you, make sure the site uses responsive design. This means your website is displayed differently on mobile devices than the way it’s displayed on a desktop monitor.

For example, a website’s menu on a desktop is usually a horizontal bar across the top, and you may have a sidebar on the left or right of the page. However, these web page elements won’t fit on the screens of most mobile devices, so a responsive design changes the menu into a drop-down list and puts sidebars at the bottom of the page under the main content for a nice snug fit.

If you use WordPress for your website design, then find a responsive theme that can be adapted to fit with a variety of display formats. There are many free themes out there to choose from, but you’re better off investing in a theme designed by experts and regularly updated to keep up with the constant output of new devices and new screen sizes.

2. Use Security Certificates (SSL)

 Use Security Certificates (SSL) For Your Website

If your website URL currently begins with the prefix http, you should upgrade to https, which means your website is encrypted with Secure Socket Layer (SSL).

Google gives priority to web pages with SSL, so having a security certificate helps improve your site’s search engine rankings with Google.

Most reputable web hosts provide SSL certificates as a free service. And if you use WordPress, you can get a plugin to upgrade to SSL with just a few clicks. This is especially useful if you are operating an e-commerce website. The added security of encryption makes visitors more confident when making purchases with a credit card.

3. Downsize Photos to Speed Up Page Loading

Make sure your pages load quickly on mobile devices, which use less bandwidth than PCs by making the file size of your pages as small as possible.

Have you ever noticed that images are often the last part of a web page to load? That’s because text and colours don’t take up much bandwidth, but a 1mb photo can take a long time to download to a mobile device before it’s visible on the page.

The solution is simple. Optimize your images before uploading them to the website by making them the correct size and resolution to fit snugly in a web page.

Photos can be reduced from several megabytes to just a few hundred kilobytes without any real loss of quality. Here are two rules of thumb for optimized image sizes for the web:

  • Landscape images should be 1024 pixels across and 750 pixels high.
  • The ideal resolution for photos on the web is 72 pixels per inch.

There are many free programs available that you can use to optimize your photos for the web. If you want to optimize many pictures at once, use a program that can resize photos in batches.

4. Target Specific Countries

When you buy web traffic from web traffic sellers such as webtrafficgeeks, you can choose to target niches and countries depending on your target audience.

In many African and Asian countries, most internet users browse the Internet with a mobile device. So if you target those countries as a source of web traffic, then you should definitely make sure all those mobile users will see your website on their devices.

About 78% of Americans are smartphone users. That’s about 257.3 million people spending almost 3 ½ hours a day online using mobile devices.

There are about 804.5 million internet users in China, and 98% of them use mobile devices.

5. Cater to Localized Searches

Most local searches are done on mobile devices. More than 80% of smartphone owners in the United States used their phones while eating at a restaurant, and at least 90% do the same while out shopping.

Google’s developers have adapted to this on-the-move demand for localized content from mobile searches designed to make our mobile searches return the best pages and best prices.

Local mobile searches are often question-based queries with an immediate need for information. These users on mobile have high expectations and low patience. They want answers quickly. If you can cater to this demand with your own accelerated mobile web pages, then you’ll get more of that mobile web traffic in your area.  

In fact, more than 80% of smartphone shoppers use their phones while in a physical store, usually to research a product online before making an actual purchase.

6. Choose a Reliable Web Host

The location of your web hosting server affects the visibility of your website, especially if you are running your site from an obscure place.

Let’s say, for example, that you are based in Thailand and operating an online store selling Thai products. Logically you might opt for a local hosting solution with servers physically located in that country, which is likely cheaper than hosting servers located elsewhere.

However, it would help if you considered your target audience and where you want your web traffic to originate from. If you want to attract web traffic from all over the world, your visitors literally have to get to Thailand from their location. Thailand has only one main pipe connecting the Internet to the rest of the world, so the web traffic flowing to your Thailand-hosted website will experience web-traffic jams.

Your hosting server’s reliability is also essential. A server with frequent downtime also negatively impacts search results.

So look for a hosting service that has servers located in a country with good connectivity and which can assure you consistent uptime. Not only will your search results improve, but web traffic won’t get congested or diverted along the way.

7. Check and Improve Your Site’s Loading Times

Test the speed at which your web pages load on a mobile phone with ThinkGoogle Mobile Speed Test tool. It’s free to use. Type in your website’s URL, and after a few moments, the result appears showing how many seconds your web pages take to load on a 3G or 4G connection.

You’ll also be given some recommended fixes and the option to generate a detailed report that’s sent to an email address of your choice.

Click here to test the speed of your website on mobile devices.

8. Keep All Aspects of Your Website Up-to-Date 

You’re probably using a content management system (CMS) with themes and plugins that need to be kept up to date with the latest releases. If you don’t, parts of your website will quickly become out of date and vulnerable to security issues.

Updating is usually free, quick, and relatively simple. You can usually do batch updates, but it’s important to remember to check for updates frequently, at least once a week.

By updating often, you’ll benefit from beefed up security and better search engine rankings.

9. Avoid Popups

If your website has popups, try to avoid having the same popups appear on mobile versions of your site because popups are annoying enough on a desktop, but at least you can quickly close them with the click of a mouse.

The same popups on a mobile screen are very annoying. They cover most of the screen and can be difficult to close. You’ll lose visitors fast if you don’t adapt or eliminate popups for mobile web traffic.

If you really need popups on mobile pages, then you can still have them, but there are some rules you need to follow to make sure you don’t get penalized by Google popup police.

Make the popups as unobstructive as possible, so they only cover a small fraction of the screen and make them easy to close.

Of course, some popups are necessary, such as login dialogs, age verification forms, cookie notices, but you won’t be penalized for those as long as you stick to the guidelines above.

10. Make Your Website Accessible to All Readers

Even if you took great care in deciding on the look and colour of your website, keep in mind that some people are colour blind and might not be able to read your website content so easily.

Adjusting the contrast for colour blind readers will help ensure your content is accessible to all readers, including the visually impaired.

How to Check Whether Your Website Is Mobile Friendly

If you use a mobile device yourself, then, of course, you can easily check how your website looks and functions on your own device, but it’s almost impossible to know the results for every kind of device.

Google comes to the rescue once again with an online tool to check whether your website is mobile-friendly.

Use Google to check whether your website is mobile-friendly. Click here to use it.

Simply enter the URL of the website you want to check, and after a few moments, Google gives you a screenshot of your homepage on a mobile device and tells you whether your page is friendly for mobile web traffic.

The results also include details of any page loading issues you can address to make your website mobile-friendly. Don’t worry too much about page loading issues if your page is considered mobile-friendly. Some things on a secure website simply aren’t meant to be easily accessible.

For more information on how to drive quality web traffic to your website read more of our articles here.