Niche sites go mobile (and I don’t just mean porn)

Opera’s August State of the Mobile Web report confirms that it’s not just the web that is cross platform but also our browsing habits. While we saw in April’s report that 40% of traffic to the mobile web was to social networking sites, August’s report shows that we spend a significant amount of time browsing niche web pages in addition to the most popular ones.

I can relate to this entirely. Before I used Opera Mini I simply wouldn’t bother with some sites because they had too many links, no skip links, huge images, vast amounts of scrolling and so on. All this meant that getting to the content I wanted was a real effort. As a result I’d find myself sticking to the sites I had to use such as travel updates and possibly a bit of news.

Using the enhanced browsing features of Opera Mini I can comfortably access my social networking sites of choice to keep in touch with friends (so much so I use these more than texting) as well as catch up with cool stuff that I was previously restricted to doing on a desktop.

Take the image below for example that shows Facebook when viewed using WAP. Just at a glance it seems like (and is) a long list of links that are not easy on the eye and promises lots of laborious scrolling.

In contrast the image below shows Facebook viewed in a Opera Mini and renders just as you’d expect to see it on a web page. The zoom in and zoom out features mean that you can quickly jump around the page and find what you want.

(You can check out the difference for yourself by looking at your favorite site using the Opera Mini Emulator).

Now that we’re no longed restricted to the “walled garden” of a WAP browser, smaller sites are driving larger amounts of traffic making it really a one web experience. To ensure that your site isn’t left behind you need to make sure you have done what you can to build pages that work in all mobile and small devices using the W3C Mobile Web Best Practices. The added bonus of this of course is that if you do build pages with the mobile web in mind you’ll also be letting in a huge amount of other users such as people with disabilities as there is a strong cross over between the mobile and accessible web.

More on the mobile web and accessibility coming soon!

One thought on “Niche sites go mobile (and I don’t just mean porn)

Comments are closed.