A client of mine called today in an absolute panic today because he realized his Wordpress blog was not very mobile friendly. I was able to talk him off the ledge quickly because there are a lot of quick plugins to handle making a mobile version of your site. More on those in a minute. But it made me think, how important is it really that he have a smoking hot mobile version of his theme?
In his case, it turned out to be pretty important. He runs a popular baseball blog in the New York/Tri-State area. Through some dives into his website analytics, we discovered that there is a fairly sizable audience checking out his site in the morning from mobile devices. We attributed this to people riding mass transit to work and checking in on their teams during their ride to work.
He happens to write a pretty funny recap of every game. He's pretty good about getting it up late at night around the time the game ends. He had done this simply to catch the SEO wave in time for it to get some SERPs results by the time the next morning rolled around. Unknowingly, people were looking to get his posts on their mobile devices as well.
We had just completed a more graphically intense redesign of his site that was wreaking havoc on smart phones.
I think it is safe to say that publishers should be very concerned about their sites rendering properly on mobile devices. Everything is going mobile, so it smart to get in the game early.
With that in mind, don't panic if your site is note especially mobile friendly just yet. It isn't critically important for most publishers. In the case of my client, there was a very time specific point where his content was being consumed. However, for most publishers that will not be the case.
For now, we have implemented some simple plugins on his site to better accommodate his mobile users. Over the next few weeks, we will be building a custom mobile treatment for his site to better monetize this niche audience.
Here are the best mobile plugins for Wordpress
- WPTouch - Primarily focused on touch based mobile devices such as iPhone, Andriod, Blackberry Storm, etc.
- Wordpress Mobile Edition - Great generic mobile site. Very text-based, therefore loads quickly.
- MobilePress - Cross platform compatible.
- Wordpress Mobile Pack - Lots of configurable options.
Photo by Mike Licht via Flickr.