How to Get Your Blog Mobile Friendly

Welcome to day 6 of the 31 Days to Build a Better Blog challenge where today we’re going to talk about making your blog mobile friendly.

mobile friendly

While to get your blog completely mobile friendly will take you longer than a single day today you can come up with a plan to do so if you’ve not already.

This task is VERY important. We’re getting to the point where half of your blog’s readers are probably viewing your blog on mobile devices and if your design isn’t good you could be losing them and also running the risk of falling in Google’s search rankings!

If you’re already mobile friendly – todays a great day to review your design not that front.

In This Episode

  • Why a mobile friendly design is so important for you to have in place
  • Questions to ask when reviewing your blog design on mobile
  • 2 Tools from Google to help you assess how your blog is performing on mobile devices
  • My Confession with Mobile Friendly Blogs
  • 3 Suggested ways forward if your blog is not mobile friendly – plugins, responsive themes and custom design
  • Some suggestions for those of you who already have mobile friendly blogs

Tools and Resources

Test Your Blog

WordPress Plugins

Responsive Themes

    • I’ve used Studio Press who offer fully responsive designs.

Need Technical Support?

      • If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the idea of installing and getting plugins set up or installing themes talk to the team at WPCurve who offer WordPress support and do small jobs. You can either sign up for a monthly plan to get ongoing support or hire them to do a one off job.

Note: I am an affiliate for StudioPress and WPCurve. I’ve also been a user of both services and recommend them genuinely fro that experience and from knowing the teams behind them well.

Full Transcript Expand to view full transcript Compress to smaller transcript view
Welcome to the ProBlogger Podcast episode 6 on day 6 of 31 Days to Build a Better Blog. Today, your challenge is to make your blog mobile-friendly. It’s a challenge that will probably take you more than today, but you can do some great groundwork to get you well underway. Today’s show notes are at

First, a quick word from our sponsor, 99designs, the best place for new businesses to build their brand. 99designs makes it easy to get your next project off the ground with quality, affordable design. To get you a logo, business card, mobile app, blog template or more, visit and get a $99 upgrade for free.

Hi, this is Darren from ProBlogger. Welcome to day 6 of 31 Days to Build a Better Blog, where we’re teaching you 31 different things that you can do to improve your blog, and then challenging you to go away and do it. Really, the doing part is the most important part of this 31-day challenge, so I hope you are taking action.

Today’s challenge is a big one. Yesterday’s was pretty small in many ways, but it had a big impact, but today’s is a bigger challenge, and it may actually take you longer than one day to implement, but I want you to make some decisions today that you can go away and implement. Today’s challenge is to make your blog mobile-friendly.

I know some of you have already done this and I’ve got some things for you to do as well, but it’s a really important challenge. We’re approaching a time where more people will read blogs on their mobile devices than desktops. In fact, for many blogs, it’s already happened. I know on my blogs, I checked this morning on Digital Photography School, half of my readers exactly 50% are now viewing the blog on mobile. On ProBlogger, 55% of my blog readers are viewing on mobile, so it’s really important.

What I’ve also noticed is that traffic coming from social media is even more viewed on mobile. Lastly, in a recent update, Google announced that if a site was mobile-friendly that would start to count as a factor in how they rank sites in their search results. If you want to be found on Google, it helps to have a mobile-friendly device.

The first thing I want you to do today is to get your mobile out, and if you’ve got a tablet, you can get that out as well. Take a look at what your readers are currently experiencing when viewing your blog on a mobile device. Simply load up your blog on your mobile phone and have a look at what they say. What does it look like? What looks good? Have a surf around. What would they like? What would they find frustrating? Do they have to scroll sideways? Do they need to pinch and zoom all the time just to be able to read the content?

Does it load fast? How do the images and videos display? How do the menus display? Is there anything that’s broken? Do you have pop-ups that are impossible to shut down? All of these things are factors to help you to assess what the experience is of your blog. I’m going to include a couple of links in the show notes to this episode. There are links to tools that Google has created to see how your blog is performing on mobile and desktop. These links will give you a rating for your site, and they’ll also identify areas that you might need to improve. Areas that are loading slowly or broken on different mobile devices. 

It’s worth doing this exercise not only on your mobile but on a tablet as well, because you’ll see different things there. If you’ve got other people in your family or in friendship groups who have different types of mobile phones, it’s sometimes worth having a look at those as well whether they’re Android or iOS.

Now at this point, I want to make a confession. While my main blog at Digital Photography School is fully responsive and has been designed with mobile in mind, ProBlogger is not so great at the moment, and that’s an area that we’re working on at the moment. Today’s challenge is actually something that we’re working on as a team right now. We have a mobile theme of sorts on ProBlogger, but it’s one of the earliest ones and it needs updating. In fact, we’re going to do a fully responsive design for ProBlogger. That change will come soon. 

If you don’t have a mobile-friendly blog, there are few things that you can do. Firstly, you could have a look around your niche and other books to see what they do. I think it’s really important to do this, you actually start to say what the current trends are, what works well, what doesn’t work well, and that can then inform your decision about how you’ll build a mobile theme for your blog.

Once you’ve done this, you’ve got a few options. I’m mainly going to talk here to WordPress bloggers, but other platforms have similar options as well. For example on Blogger, if you’re using Google’s Blogger, they have mobile themes already available, but if you’re on WordPress, there are three main options that you could pursue. Firstly, you could install a plugin. This probably the most simple option, but it may not be quite as customized or as elegant a solution, but some of the plugins are pretty good today.

There are a few different ones. If you go to the WordPress plugin directory, you’ll see a whole heap listed if you just do a search for a mobile theme. One that I’ve used and that I know a lot of other bloggers used, in fact, I think it’s been downloaded millions of times, 5 million last time I checked, is WPtouch. It’s just a plugin that you can install that has a free option. They also have premium options. It does get a bit expensive if you go for the top option, but their free options are pretty good and it would probably be suitable for most smaller blogs.

It can be customized a bit, you can put your logo in and you can change the colors just to make it a little bit more like the rest of your design. Similarly, you could use the Jetpack WordPress plugin. Many of you probably already installed this for the stats, but it also has a very simple and clean mobile theme that you could switch on as well. Anyone coming to your blog with these plugins installed and they’re on a mobile device, the plugin detects that they’re on a mobile and it will show them that version.

There’s another one called WP Mobile Pack as well, which claims to appify your theme. So, there are different options out there. Go and have a look at the ones that suit you and install those plugins. Be a little bit careful with plugins. You want to make sure that they get good ratings, that they’re secure, and you want to keep them up to date, but it’s a fairly simple way to make your blog mobile-friendly.

Another way that you can go about making your blog mobile-friendly is to get a responsive theme. Most themes today, whether they are free themes or premium themes, come with some sort of responsive design. This means that the content will resize and rearrange to fit smaller screens without the need for separate mobile themes or plugins.

I’m a big fan of the guys at StudioPress—they’re with Copyblogger—and all of their designs, their themes are fully responsive, and I’ve got a link for you in the show notes there. Most of the other theme providers today, whether they are WooThemes or one of the others will also have responsive designs. It might be just time to completely change the design of your whole blog. If you’re willing to do that, you’ll probably get a nice responsive theme as well.

The third option is to hire a designer to do it for you. This is the most expensive way to go, and it will probably take the most time as well, but you’re going to get a more elegant solution and something that reflects your brand. There’s a whole heap of designers out there who will do that type of work, but you probably only want to do that if you’re making a living from your blogging or you’re at least on the way to doing so because it’s going to cost you quite a bit.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the task of making your blog mobile-friendly, you might want to talk to the guys at WP Curve. They offer you WordPress support for small updates, tweaks, and maintenance issues. They might be good at helping you to install one of those plugins if you are not comfortable doing that. They have a monthly fee, which will enable you to get support like this and for other things as well.

There are your three options. Whether it’s installing a plugin, getting a redesign with a responsive theme, or getting a custom design, it is really important to address this issue of mobile design. If you’ve already got a mobile-friendly blog, it’s probably worth still doing the exercise and looking through your blog or on a mobile device or a number of them, if possible. How could you improve it? Are you on the latest version of a plugin that you might be using? Is it starting to look a bit tired and dated?

Look through the last 10 posts on your blog? How do they display? What you’ll find sometimes is that images in one post display fine, but on another, they don’t. You might want to dig into that and work out why it is. How about videos? How about the titles and headings? How about different formatting? Sometimes things break over time. Is there anything that needs fixing?

The other thing you can do once you’ve got a mobile-friendly blog is dig a little into the mobile stats in Google Analytics. You might find that some posts get really good stats on mobile, but not so good on desktop, or vice versa. There might be things that you can unearth by looking at those stats as well.

I hope that today’s challenge is one that you don’t find too overwhelming. I think I’ve given you some options today that can be more time consuming than others, but it’s really important to ask these questions. I’d love to hear how you found today’s challenge, you can head to, and there’s an opportunity there for you to leave comments and see today’s show notes.

Lastly, a quick word from our sponsor, 99designs. If you are like many listeners of this show (and I’ve been talking to a few of you), who are in the early stages of getting their blog off the ground or perhaps starting a new project on the side of their blog, then your to-do list (like mine was a few weeks ago starting this podcast) might look a mile long, but there’s one task you should tackle sooner than later, and that is thinking about branding.

One of the first things I did when I started thinking about this podcast was to get some artwork underway and I went to 99designs to do that. You can get great submissions from designers from around the world for your design, and within a week have a beautiful design for your project. If you head to as a ProBlogger Podcast listener, you’ll get a free $99 upgrade to use on your first design, so head over there now and grab your discount today.

I’ll talk to you tomorrow on day 7 of 31 Days to Build a Better Blog. Talk to you then.

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Also check out the great offer our friends, and new podcast sponsor, 99designs have for you (worth $99). They’re a fantastic place to go if you’re looking for any help with graphic design in your blogging.

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Pick up the 31DBBB eBook at 50% Off

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