August 8, 2020

Death To Mobile Site Versions

Stop Using Mobile Sites! There’s simply not enough good reasons left to have a mobile version of your website. I know, I know, I’m guilty of this too, but we need to stop.

There’s nothing more annoying than when I’m sitting on the toilet reading Google reader on my iPhone and click a link to an article only to be re-directed away from the article I want and onto their mobile version.

It’s like the web server is saying “let’s see, he wants an article, but he’s on an iPhone, I know, let’s send him to this page that looks great on the iPhone but makes it impossible to find the article he wants to read. Brilliant!” In which developer’s mind does this logic make sense, and how many pints of Guinness did they drink when coming up with it?

I mean, look, most of today’s smart phones have browsers on them. If you’re still using web enabled phone from 2000, you don’t deserve to access web pages on it anyway. Upgrade your shit or get off the toilet (see, I was going somewhere with that toilet line…)

I know that many sites use flash, silverlight, and other technologies that don’t work well on phones, but why not create a simple .html version instead of a mobile version? In fact, do your SEO department (and users) a favor and just design the site in HTML and CSS to begin with. The trick is to make the HTML version offer the same information as the rest of the site though – so when I’m looking for an article and have to use some alternate version of the site, I can actually find what I’m looking for.

Mobile versions of sites served their purpose in the 90’s and early 00’s, but with today’s browser enabled phones they’re really just more of a hindrance.

If you really must create a mobile version of your site, don’t include iPhones as “mobile browsers.” Most iPhone users would rather just see the real web page. At the very least though, you should at least include a link on the mobile site that will send me back to the original page I had surfed to.

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About Ryan Jones

Ryan Jones is an SEO from Detroit. By day he works as a manager of SEO & Analytics at SapientNitro where his team performs SEO for Fortune500 clients. By night he's either playing hockey or attempting to take over the world with his own websites - which he would have already succeeded in doing had it not been for those meddling kids and their dog. The views expressed here have not been paid for and belong only to Ryan, not any of his employers or clients. Follow Ryan on Twitter at: @RyanJones, add him on Google+ or visit his personal website: www.RyanMJones.com

Comments

  1. I completely agree, and definitely with the iPhone browser. I was with my accountant just yesterday and she asked me a question about end of year cash that required me to go to my bank’s website. Surprise, surprise — a mobile version that I couldn’t do this on. I got to see like 5 transactions at a time and had to page through them. No filters or search method.

  2. I agree, some mobiles it may be apropriate but not got phones like the iPhone