Throughout the past several years, mobile internet access has skyrocketed. In fact, it’s projected to become the most common route users take to perform light research and read their favorite websites. While the popularity of mobile websites shouldn’t be a surprise, what is a surprise are the number of sites who still operate underperforming mobile platforms.
As many enterprises have discovered, failing to answer the question of why mobile site performance is lacking costs them more than visitors. Google continues to increase the importance of mobile site performance with each algorithm update. Essentially, avoiding the necessary task of enhancing mobile website performance is a guaranteed way to diminish current and future success.
While there is a plethora of reasons why a mobile site may be underperforming, the majority of cases are the result of several common issues. Let’s dive into the miniature world of mobile internet access and explore the primary causes of diminished mobile web performance.
#1 | Improper Image Optimization
You should already know the importance of image optimization for website performance. However, when it comes to mobile sites, image optimization is 10x’s as important. Unfortunately, a study performed by Alexa’s Top 1000 sites found almost 90 percent of these sites were negatively effected by poor image optimization.
When dealing with images on your desktop and mobile site, make sure to resize and compress each file before uploading to your server. Secondly, and most importantly, don’t use excessive images. This is especially important for mobile sites. While your number of images may look fine on a large desktop computer screen, the same number can be overwhelming and performance-draining on a mobile device.
#2 | Non-Mobile Page Designs
What works on desktop and laptop computers rarely translates well on the tiny screen of mobile devices. Not only are traditional website designs visually unappealing when viewing on a mobile device, but its infrastructure is often too large and heavy for swift rendering. Ultimately, this results in an underperforming mobile site incapable of producing the incredible speeds mobile users demand.
Essentially, your website is a collection of two different sites: desktop and mobile. While both feature similar content, their framework must be completely different to leverage the strengths of both platforms. If you’re using a WordPress theme, make sure it’s optimized for mobile use. For static HTML sites, actively work to construct a mobile-specific design geared toward streamlined rendering and minimalistic file requests.
#3 | Excessive Web Page Assets = Excessive HTTP Requests
When designing a mobile website, the less bells-and-whistles, the faster the site renders. The biggest issue many website owners encounter is improper mobile site design. One of the most effective techniques that’s guaranteed to boost performance regardless of user connection strength is reducing the total number of on-page assets.
Avoid complex visual designs, embedded media files and unnecessary images. This not only lightens page load, which is important for perceived performance, but the less assets each page owns, the fewer HTTP requests are required for complete rendering.