A website utilizing responsive design may still perform poorly if the content isn’t optimized for mobile.

Implementing a responsive design is just part of providing a great mobile experience for your website visitors. If you are ready to leave the competition behind, here are three simple areas you can improve to make your responsive website a real stand-out on mobile.

1. Respect the user’s bandwidth

Reduce the “bloat” in content downloads. If your users are not on a Wi-Fi connection, every byte they download matters. In a responsive design website, a large image is downloaded and re-sized to fit the smaller screen real estate. Why not allow a device with a smaller screen to request a smaller image? Being mobile-friendly means implementing code that feeds smaller images to smaller screens.

2. Deliver the webpages faster

Deliver pages faster by hosting the larger pieces of the page on a CDN (content delivery network). A webpage is made up of many different files that are eventually assembled by a user’s web browser. CDN’s provide a network of servers around the world that are able to deliver data faster than a standard web-server. The most common items to feed from a CDN are images, videos and sound. You can also use a CDN to host JavaScript, CSS or any of the “pieces” that are being collected by the web browser. The quicker the pieces arrive, the faster the page loads and the better the mobile experience.

3. Design the details for a mobile world

"Design and develop every critical user interaction point specifically for mobile."

Design and develop every critical user interaction point specifically for mobile. The most common example of this is an online form. A basic responsive design will usually stack the form fields into a single column with little attention paid to size of input fields and the reduced screen real estate. This can make traditional forms frustrating to fill out on a mobile device. Forms must be designed differently so the user experience is fast and easy.

To make great mobile-friendly forms, you must:

  • Keep it short and sweet. Limit forms to the most necessary information. It will up your chances of capturing user conversions.
  • Develop forms to open the right softkeys. If a form field is asking the user to enter a phone number, clicking in the field should open a version of the keyboard that is defaulted to numbers.
  • Automate forms to scroll to errors. If a form is not submitted because there are missing fields or other validation issues, scroll the screen to show the error right away so you don’t lose the user.
  • Design big and bold submit buttons. They are easier to see and click on in a small touch-screen.
  • Go full screen.Making any web forms overlay the entire screen makes the intended action very clear to the user: fill out the form or close the overlay. Reducing clutter and distractions is a great way to help the user focus on the task at hand.

Reap the rewards

Don’t forget about Google and friends. Search algorithms are constantly being updated to give increased ranking signals to websites that are developed to be mobile-friendly. Catering to an audience on the go must be an integral part of your overall SEO strategy.

By making your content optimized for mobile you will improve performance and results: longer time on site, more page views and increased conversions. It can be the difference between capturing a lead and losing a potential customer.