John Magilke
3 min readAug 24, 2020

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Mobile Optimization VS Mobile Compatibility

Web sites are changing rapidly the last few years. There are many reasons for this but the most prominent reasons have to do with how we access the web today.

Many of us are very busy people. We look at web pages on pads, laptops & phones while we’re on the go. Many older websites are not compatible or optimized for some of these mobile devices.

Compatibility VS Optimization

You may think that having your website compatible for viewing on mobile devices is good enough; but is it?

Should it be optimized for mobile devices?

Are compatibility & optimized websites the same thing?

No they are not!

Let’s explore these two scenarios for a few minutes. . .

Mobile compatible websites are more difficult to maneuver around in; with a mobile device.

You will notice:

  1. Text is hard to read unless you zoom in on it.

2. You may have to scroll up, down, left or right to see things on the site (or do the pinch & squeeze thing with thumb & finger).

3. Tabs may be difficult to tap with your finger because of the small size of the tab.

4. You cannot tap phone numbers to make a call from the site.

5. Difficulty tapping tabs going from page to page or item to item because of their small size.

These issues will drive people from your site in search of a more mobile friendly alternative very fast.

With 91% of all users accessing social media on mobile devices(a); I can’t see them running to a computer to do their shopping. They are doing it on their mobile devices!

Optimized websites are easily recognized by the lack of frustration involved in searching within them.

  1. Menus front & center on the page.

2. Clickable contact phone numbers.

3. Large easy to tap tabs.

4. Easily readable text.

5. All scrolling can be done with your thumb or one finger (no pinching or squeezing necessary).

Here are example pictures(b) of screens:

The one on the left is mobile compatible. The one on the right is optimized for mobile devices.

You see the difference immediately; don’t you?

The one on the left is hard to read while the one on the right is very easy to read and with a flick of the thumb you can scroll to keep reading.

Which one of these pictures best represents the view of your website on a mobile device?

I hope it is the one on the right. The abandon rate of a non-optimized website is as high as 93%!©

Google Analytics

Google is in the 4th year of using their mobile-first-index for indexing website pages. This means that google looks for mobile optimization first then looks at desktop optimization.

If you are not mobile optimized you cannot be indexed first. You will never hold the top spot ahead of a mobile optimized site with the same search criteria.

Google looks at these criteria when indexing websites:

  1. Speed~google looks for lightning fast speeds. One half second or less.

2. Don’t block CSS, java script or images. In the past, hiding images would help pages load faster. Today’s phones can handle images within a fraction of a second.

3. Mobile design~ this is what this article is about; mobile friendly design.

4. On page optimization~ titles & descriptions that are short & to the point.

5. Local optimization~ make sure people can find your physical location. Up to 50% of smartphone users visit a store within 24 hours after doing a search on their devise.

This is a quick rundown of things to consider about a website in 2020.

How does your site measure up?

Have you checked your website optimization?

If not; do it now and see how your website measures up.

Go to any search engine and type in the search bar “mobile friendly test at google”. It should come up at the top of the page. Click on the link and type in your URL and see what happens.

How do you measure up?

a) https://www.oberlo.com/blog/social-media-marketing-statistics

b) developers.google.com

c) https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/web-design-stats-for-2020

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John Magilke

Copywriter in the Automotive, Agriculture, & Natural health & wellness industry. Helping clients understand the products they need.