With mobile device usage continuing to increase by leaps and bounds, businesses have to build mobile websites to take advantage of the trend. However, building a mobile website isn’t as simple as building a miniature version of your main site. You need the right elements to make your mobile web design successful and really provide a great user experience for mobile visitors.

Here are the five elements we feel are important.

1. Design and Information Architecture
Design and information architecture is quite different for a mobile site. You have to tailor the user interface for a smaller screen size. You want to keep your site structure simple and make it obvious what actions user can and should take. Even big brands like Virgin Blue are using simple structures like a simple navigation link menu for the front page.

2. Content
How content is displayed is another element you need to be aware of. Content will display differently from a desktop/laptop computer. What looks like good formatting may come out to a jumbled mess when converted into a mobile platform. You have to make sure that everything from spacing, font, line breaks, images, to formatting is looked over with a fresh set of eyes.

3. Functionality
For more complex mobile sites, functionality is a very important element. The key to great functionality is to go minimalist. Keep web pages small and use a clean layout for your website. Although apps are a completely different topic, you can really learn a lot about functionality from studying the popular ones in the market. You’ll see that even complex apps try to go with the minimalist approach.

4. Call to Actions
Your mobile site should obviously have conversion as a main goal. You can’t assume that users will take the right action, so you need to use clear call to actions on your website. What really works well on mobile websites is graphical call to action buttons whether it’s a click to call function, buy now button, or a sign up form. You really don’t want to be meek about it either. As long as you don’t go overboard, it’s a good idea to make your buttons stand out with some color and unique font.

5. Usability and Experience
For mobile web design, delivering good usability and user experience is a combination of providing excellent design, information architecture and functionality. You need to do start with the right framework and to do that you need to really understand your audience. For instance, by understanding what your user came to your site for, you can organize a user targeted navigation menu, create relevant design and an easily consumable site architecture.