Is your website iPhone-friendly?

I would like to address an issue that many people overlook, yet is becoming increasingly more important – websites viewed on the move.

By this, I mean catering for the many people that browse the internet on iPhones and iPads in particular. These days, there is a large portion of the market that does not use a traditional laptop or PC to browse online and yet they could very well be potential customers of yours.

There seems to be one train of thought that is “you need an app for that” and that puts people off due to the cost. However, there is no need to go employ the time and expense of creating a bespoke application.

Whilst apps do have their place, websites can in fact have a mobile-friendly version that shows off the main elements of the site but in a way that is viewable from a handset.

There are many examples of companies that do this well but www.reedsrains.co.uk is my particular favourite. The site allows you to search for nearby properties, cleverly using global positioning to find where in the world you and your phone are.

Using the same technology, it then gives you directions so you can find your way there, or as an alternative it gives you the contact details of the local branch so that you can call them and arrange a viewing.

iPads have much larger screens, so many websites will view fine on one, but it is worth noting that iPads and iPhones will not run Flash, which is the software behind most animations on the web.

As Apple simply does not support the software, if you have a fancy animated site you will have to bear in mind that it may be totally invisible on either of these devices.

Many sites use Flash for navigation which, whilst it may look good, won’t work on a mobile handset and so will render your website completely useless to these people.

All websites must be built for the end user, so as long as this is kept in mind your site will be well built, look good, be easy to use and be optimised and be liked by search engines.

Lisa Thompson
Business development director
ISSL