Being Finger-Friendly is the New Way Forward for Websites
All around the world, more and more people are investing in devices which help them stay connected while they are on the go, and the number of new touch-powered devices is exploding each passing day, a few of which include ebooks, smartphones, tablets and touch-powered desktops with a functional keyboard. It has been predicted that the number of touch device users is just going to increase as not only are portable devices easy to handle but also empowers you to access the Web regardless of the place you are at. Now that you know the importance of catering to the touch device users, it is clear that you need a website for your business which focuses on the growing demand of this new niche of customers and works in making their experience better. All this leads to one conclusion: though it is possible to develop different interfaces for touch and non-touch gadgets, but the better way to do it is by creating every site touch friendly.
When planning to develop a touch-friendly website, the two most important aspects that we need to concentrate on are finger and thumb friendliness. The basic difference between a regular site and one which is designed for smaller screens and touch devices is that you need to condense and prioritize the content present on the site according to the preference of the user. The reason why you should induce this aspect of your website is because the tried and tested standardized websites fail when it comes to using them on a smaller device as a lot of navigation, zooming and panning is needed then. This is why you must create a site which has a few buttons and mega pixels and looks simple and easy to use. Also touch devices are said to be designed for fingers, but in reality, it is the thumb that is used when using these devices and thus, it is important to focus on small guidelines that will help you in doing it. Mentioned below are a few tips for designers and developers to incorporate a few measures that will make the website more touch-friendly-
Focus on thumb friendliness – larger buttons
As discussed above, thumbs are used more than fingers when it comes to using touch devices. This is why you should concentrate on creating a website which can be used with just one hand as you do not want to make it something which needs a lot of effort while pinching and zooming. Also, smaller targets are harder to hit when using a finger and keeping a usual thumb rule of 1 cm X 1 cm must be kept in consideration while developing the site. Avoid using text links and use larger buttons instead. Using the buttons which span at the display are a better option as they are the most convenient to use. Eliminating unintended taps to make it a better experience can be done by adding padding buttons and keeping the form controls are large.
Reduce the text input
This is something that helps your website cater to touch as well as non touch devices and you can maximize the experience for mouse and keyboard users also. It basically means that you need to minimize the text input as it is very hard for users with smaller screens to type easily. Make sure that your website contains what is required and useless content is kept at bay. When dealing with a registration form, do not mark the non-required information as mandatory as it just annoys the user and they might leave the process in between. This way you are able to hit two birds with one stone and works out well for you.
Design a website assuming it is made for touch screens
By now it is very clear that with a touch interface, keyboard, mouse, and touch-keyboard hybrids, the types of inputs have increased and with new technological advancements and Windows 8, they are going to increase further. This means, your website needs to be future-friendly also and needs to incorporate the various new input methods that will come up. For this, you need to assume that your website will function on touch screens. Remember to keep pin points on the edges on the left and right as it makes easier for the thumb to approach and give preference to the left side for primary controls. Also, enhance your website with hovers and make sure the buttons have an optimal tappable area.
With an ever-increasing touch device user base and input methods, the need to constantly upgrade your website and make sure it comes at par with the future technologies as well. Using the above mentioned guidelines in your websites will help you reach the future-friendliness required in the current scenario and will also ensure that the user experience is also up to the mark.
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