4 Billion People… Can They “See” Your Blog?

Photo Credit: Dorne http://morguefile.com/creative/dorne

Mobile internet browsing is growing quickly in popularity.  There are more than 4 billion mobile devices worldwide!  Are you missing out on this traffic?  You might be if you don’t have a mobile theme on your blog.

What is a mobile theme? A mobile theme will make your site easier to navigate and faster to load for mobile device users.

It’s not just a “small screen” version of your site but a version setup specifically for mobile viewers.  Mobile themes are created to be easy to navigate from a small screen and to load more quickly for mobile devices.

Remember, most cellular phones and mobile devices are on a much slower internet connection that you home computer probably is.  This means your regular site may be very s-l-o-w to load.  And mobile visitors won’t stick around to browse if it loads too slowly.

In some cases, like if you’ve got a lot flash or a graphics-intensive site, it may not even be usable on mobile devices!  When surfing with my iPod touch, I’ve been to more than one website that I couldn’t navigate at all.

If you don’t have a mobile theme installed yet, it’s a quick and easy fix!  Here are 6 different options you can use to make your website mobile friendly (some in a matter of minutes!):

WordPress Mobile Pack

WordPress Mobile Pack is a plugin you can install and activate like any other WordPress plugin.  It will help you make your website and blog portable device friendly.

It includes a theme selection so you can pick one in a color that compliments your regular website theme.  Once activated it watches what type of user is visiting and will automatically show the right theme to mobile visitors.

Mobile Pack also includes a mobile admin theme so that you can post and edit from your mobile device.  That’s a nice feature to have if you’ve ever wanted to post to your blog or make an edit while you were out of the office and away from your computer.

The plugin allows to to track your mobile analytics with PercentMobile, get listed on mpexo for mobile sites, and integrates with WP Super Cache.

WordPress Mobile Edition

This is another, simpler plugin you can activate to make your website mobile friendly.  It doesn’t add a mobile admin theme but does automatically detect when a mobile device is visiting your site and shows the mobile version.  It also works with WP Super Cache.

MoFuse

MoFuse bills itself as “The Easiest Way to Be Mobile.”  It’s a paid service that offers many additional tools and services for your website.  It can pull your RSS feed and turn it into a mobile format.  It updates every 15 minutes.

Mobify

This is a free service for many sites including WordPress that supports all of the top devices.  It also gives you a way to customize your site design if you want to (with an upgraded package and a monthly fee).  To use it, just install the Mobify WordPress plugin.

WPTouch

WPTouch is a plugin that creates a mobile theme for your website when it’s being viewed from a touch device.

Mobile Press

Another free WordPress plugin you can use to make your blog portable-device friendly.  With this one you can create custom themes for different mobile browsers.  You can use it with Aduity for showing ads.

Today’s questions:

  • Did you have a mobile theme on your blog?
  • Did you get one setup today?  Which one did you choose?
  • Do you surf the web from a mobile device?

Share your thoughts below!

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6 Comments

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Michelle Shaeffer, Jeanine Byers Hoag. Jeanine Byers Hoag said: RT @SmallBizMuse: Blog: 4 Billion People… Can They "See" Your Blog? http://bit.ly/bKpk75 […]

  2. Actually, I think as Android gets more and more traction and also with release of Opera Mini for iPhone – the need of creating mobile themes is going to be diminished. Using Android phone you can actually see any website. I mean it uses the same engine as Google Chrome and Apple Safari does.
    Slava recently posted… The Alpsee Lake in GermanyMy Profile

    1. Good point, Slava. Some mobiles do have vastly better browser options than others.

      One option for now would be to use the identification to send devices running Android to their own theme or the full version of a blog but continue sending older and more challenged devices to the mobile versions.

      I do hope that eventually more mobile devices will offer expanded features and a better mobile browsing experience. I think as it continues to grow and evolve we’ll still want mobile themes but not such stripped down ones – we’ll be able to make it much more like the full versions of our sites just with better layout for small screens. Progress is good! :)

      1. I agree completely.

  3. I’ve been learning a bit about making my blogs mobile-friendly, but I haven’t taken any action on it yet. Thanks for these options. I’m going to check out the WordPress Mobile Edition plugin.

  4. This is a great tip, Michelle! Thanks for taking the time to post.

    …pretty amazing, this time we live in…

    Take care
    MS
    Mike Shippey recently posted… Counter PunchMy Profile

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