Give patients on phones and devices a good experience
Have you ever pulled up a website on your phone, only to find tiny text, images that don’t load or are cut off and oddly formatted and no phone number you can click to call? If your practice website design doesn’t account for your mobile visitors, that’s the experience your patients and prospective visitors may be having. Statistics show more than half of people now go online from their phones and tablets, rather than desktop computers. Don’t let them click away to find a more convenient option. Read on for tips and examples to improve patients’ online experience of your practice.
Mobile-friendly vs. mobile-responsive
First off, it’s worth defining the difference between mobile-friendly vs. mobile-responsive websites. According to online marketing company Constant Contact, websites that are mobile-friendly are typically shrunken down versions of what you would see on a desktop computer. The information is the same, but on a small phone screen buttons can be hard to click and user experience often suffers.
In comparison, mobile-responsive websites have been reformatted so that clickable items are enlarged and pictures are resized. This also ensures the user experience stays the same when the mobile device is turned from a vertical view to a horizontal view.
Mobile-friendly means seeing the same information from desktop to mobile, while mobile-responsive is experiencing the same information on both platforms.
Google offers a simple way to test the mobile-friendliness of your website. Simply type in your URL and in a couple of minutes, the tool will give you a response and a screenshot of your mobile site. Of course, you can also search your website on a phone or tablet to see what mobile visitors see.
Quick tips for improving mobile users’ experience
If you discover your website doesn’t work well on mobile devices, you don’t necessarily need to start from scratch. A few simple changes could have a positive impact on the way users engage with your practice. Consider these tips from members of Forbes’ Young Entrepreneur Council:
Increase font sizes. Make sure to use large, legible fonts that are easy to see – no cursive or complicated fonts that will be hard to see on small screens. Mobile sites require more emphasis on text and links rather than images.
Compress images. Speaking of images, you’ll want to compress any you’re using to ensure they load quickly on a mobile device. There are many tools and apps that will compress or optimize images for you. Images can be compressed up to 80% without any visible loss in image quality, according to WordPress resource site WPBeginner.
On mobile sites, use large, legible fonts and buttons that are big enough to click easily with your thumbs.
Change button placement and size. Most people use their thumbs to do pretty much everything on their phones, so any button that can’t be reached with your thumb when holding the phone in your hand won’t work well. Enlarge the size of buttons to make them easily clickable.
Add a “back to top” button. Reading web pages and blog posts on a mobile device can mean a lot of scrolling. Adding this simple feature will make it easier for people to jump back to the top of the page and stay engaged with your content longer.
Use single-column forms. Do you have registration forms or payment pages on your website? Using single-column forms is an easy way to make sure they don’t cause issues on mobile devices. Mobile visitors will appreciate this and it can even improve conversion rates.
Get ideas and find out more
It’s important to prioritize your content so that mobile visitors to your website – or any visitors, for that matter – can find what they’re looking for. To get some ideas, check out these side-by-side examples of medical practice websites and mobile-responsive versions from an Australian web design company.