5th February 2014

The top 7 mobile website sins

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I understand it’s difficult tailoring your site to a variety of devices and screen sizes, I do. However, there are some things I’m subjected to when browsing on a mobile that are guaranteed to make me leave the site, and do so quickly.

So can we please all just try our best to avoid the following? Thanks, much appreciated.

#1 – Getting the Size Wrong

You had one job. Just one job and you failed. Next time you could just leave me with a desktop site and I’ll pinch to zoom to my heart’s content and make it around your content if it’s still worth it. Evident on: nearly everywhere.

Image credit: Rob Young on Flickr

#2 – Irrelevant landing page

When I get dropped at a different page to the one in the search results. Sometimes the page isn’t even on the mobile version of the site, leaving me to scroll to the super tiny footer link for the full site. This drops me at the homepage and I begin my journey again to the correct content.  Evident on: a UK transport service’s website.

Image credit: tgraham on Flickr

#3 – Unclearable Pop Ups

Stop it. It’s silly. I don’t even care what your testing, stats or pop psychology has told you about conversions. I won’t know if I want to ‘like’ or ‘subscribe’ until I’ve read the content I’ve been linked to. Evident on: various lifestyle/entrepreneur sites.

Pretty much this, but on a phone! (credit: maniacworld.com)

#4 – Re-direct Hell

How many link shortening and tracking services do you need? Really? 

If I’m using my mobile network’s data service the connection isn’t going to be as fast as broadband. So don’t make me repeatedly load a series of blank pages on my way to your content. Bonus annoyance points: if I get fed up somewhere around redirect #22 I’m going to frustrate myself trying to hit the back button until I realise I need to exit the browser and go back to the start. Evident on: I can’t remember, the rage burns the site from my brain every time this occurs

Image credit:Mokush on openclipart.org

#5 – Prompt for your App

Why would you do this? If I accidentally hit OK we’re going to have issues. Evident on: certain tabloid ‘newspapers’. I almost certainly don’t want your app and if I do I’m grown up enough to load my app store of choice and search for it all by myself. Thanks. Which leads me on to:

Image credit: esthervargasc on Flickr

#6 – Going Direct to the App Store

So I’m minding my own business, catching up on Twitter or whatever. I lazily follow a link I’m only half interested in. I’m sent straight to the app store to download an app to view this content with no other options. Why would I do this? Oh that’s right, I wouldn’t.  Evident on: a website for listing gigs for local bands.

Image credit: 55946479@N00 on Flickr

#7 – I forgot how to scroll/I want to constantly reload some small element of the page

This may well be the worst one. I can see the content. I can almost read the content, but either the page has forgotten how to scroll or it is continually reloading some element on the page and forcing the screen to bounce up and down every few damn seconds. I bet it’s not even a visible element I, as a user, could interact with. Do this and I hate you. Evident on: low quality VICE rip-offs the world over.

Image credit: fakingnews.firstpost.com

How many of these do you do?

0         You are a genius
1-2      Up your game
3-5      I hate you    
6         I really hate you
7         Not only do I really hate you, but you’re a moron – doing all these at once is barely even possible!

I bet there’s more. Which mobile sins do you hate? Let loose: