Improve Mobile User Experience with These Navigation Considerations
By now, you have no doubt heard just how much traffic on the web comes through mobile devices. Within the next couple of years, it is expected that a majority of internet traffic will be through mobile devices, leaving many webmasters and bloggers wondering how they can better capitalize upon this trend. While most of us are already aware of the SEO implications that come with a mobile-optimized website, not everyone pays attention to the aesthetic and navigational challenges that can sometimes present themselves. With that being said, do not worry: we will outline below a few simple tips you can put to use in order to improve the overall navigation experience for mobile users who frequent your site.
Feature Your Prime Pages
While tablets are becoming all the rage as of late, the bulk of mobile traffic is still coming through mobile devices. You have certainly been to more than one website in the past, only to discover that the layout either did not accommodate mobile users or its mobile design was still difficult to navigate. Pinging users with the information they most likely will want up front is the best way to ensure maximum conversions, lower bounce rates and a better overall experience for your visitors. We highly recommend in any menu or navigational equivalent that you be sure to feature your most popular and/or relevant pages at the top of each instance. This way, people won’t have to scroll through a bunch of less-important pages due to alphabetical organization or some other format, and will be more likely to follow through with the actions you desire.
Minimize Menus’ Footprint
On most mobile devices, you have but a few hundred pixels’ worth of screen to work with. Whether your mobile site is horizontally or vertically oriented, it is important to keep in mind these concerns. You want to be sure that your navigation elements are above the fold, but you also want to have room for other important, eye-catching elements in that same space. Based on plenty of research and simplicity’s sake, we highly recommend that you limit the number of items in your navigational column to six or less. This will ensure that you have plenty of space for other elements and that your users do not become saturated with choices, which could possibly make it less likely they convert in the way desired.
Be Considerate with Layout
One day, all of our mobile content will be able to project itself onto walls and in holographic form, making it far easier for everyone to find what they need. Until that day arrives, however, we need to be considerate of existing limitations. For mobile sites and particularly mobile navigation menus, picking the right font can make a world of difference in how your users interact with it. We recommend picking a taller font that also features enough space between characters to be legible in even the smallest of circumstances. In addition, you’ll want to be sure that your menu can be read with respect to contrast; black and white is the safest bet, but you can find other colour combinations that are safe as well; just be sure not to make the mistake of pinging users with too much contrast (example: blue/red).