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Is Your Blog Mobile Responsive?

mobile_bloggingDo you still use a desktop PC to check your emails? No, thought not.

Internet access on mobile devices, such as cell phones and tablets, is becoming the primary way to access the web. Thousands of businesses have already acted to ensure that their mobile sites are optimized for mobile devices, but if your blog turns into a mess when viewed on a 4” screen, then you need to act now to prepare for 2014.

Half of the US will be carrying a smart phone by next year and there will be a projected 143.2 million tablet users. There are crucial steps you can take to ensure that your readers and advertisers don’t abandon your blog on their phones and tablets.

Choose the Best Responsive Platforms

If you already have a blog then ensure that your site looks good by checking it on a smart phone or tablet. If your friends have different phones or tablets (for example, iPhone or Android) it is worth checking them both so that you can be sure you blog is responsive across the range of devices available.

If you are thinking about starting a blog, you’ll want to ensure that the platform you use is forward-thinking when it comes to mobile development. Check other people’s blogs and blogger forums to get feedback on which are the best to use for mobile readers. While most blogging sites are designed to adapt when viewed on a mobile screen, the very best are those which are fully optimized to touchscreen devices.

WordPress blogs can be adapted so that users can swipe from one article to the next when on a touchscreen device. Features such as this will only become more important as readers come to expect to be able to navigate with their fingers.

SquareSpace also works on a set template which includes a mobile design so that the site will display properly on any device all the time.

Take Your Writing with You

If you’re also spending more time away from your desktop, mobile blogging apps will be essential. Google has mobile Blogger apps for Android and iOS, as does WordPress, which makes it easier than ever to blog on the go. This is great if you are trying to fit your personal or lifestyle blog around a day job or family commitments, and have to maintain it in a short amount of time.

The mobile content of your blog, intended with a mobile device in mind, might also be different, as readers are more distracted when they’re away from their desks. This means headlines have to be snappy, and blog posts are succinct and to the point. As well as being easier for readers to access, this means less text for you to work on while you blog away from home or work.

You can also benefit from mobile blogging apps to add updates while commuting, traveling for business or even at business events. However, if you’re leaving your laptop at home and making more use of your cell phone or tablet then make sure your device is protected. You should always use a passcode to protect your personal data on a mobile device and the last thing you’ll want if your device is stolen is to worry about your blog being open to spammers.

It’s also essential to have insurance in place which can replace your tablet quickly if it’s damaged or stolen. If your device is used for business then it may already be covered by your business insurance, but always check first.

Advertise Your Change

If you have made any changes to your blog, such as adding optimizing features to make it more navigable for mobile users or introducing mobile-specific content, then make sure you shout about it. Use social media to let your readers know that they will be able to access your blog more easily via their tablet. This will have a dual effect of drawing their attention to your blog once again if they have not visited for a while, as well as identifying you as dedicated to your readers’ ease of use.

If you have advertisers on your blog already, be sure to let them know that you have switched or upgraded to a mobile-responsive blog. US mobile advertising spending is projected to hit $11.8 billion in 2014 after a 75% increase in 2013, and you can benefit from this increased investment. They may have alternate adverts they want to give you which are designed for a smaller screen.

You can also think about attracting new advertisers who will want to target mobile audiences. Desktop advertising spending is expected to peak next year, so moving to a mobile-first attitude will be essential to keeping ahead of the crowd.

Seize Mobile Opportunities

Research shows that mobile web use will actually overtake desktop internet access by 2015. It’s crucial that you act now to make your blog able to withstand the pressure from competitors.

If you’re prepared for 2014 then you can be confident your blog will be easily accessible and navigable on all devices, and be ready to build upon its success in the future.

About the Author

Eve Pearce is a freelance writer and full-time mother. She loves being able to combine her twin passions for business innovation and writing. When not at her desk or looking after the kids (husband included), she likes to take her dogs for a long walk and get away from it all.

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