Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 100.24.122.228

Forum Moderators: Robert Charlton & goodroi

Message Too Old, No Replies

16px Text For Mobile - What is current thinking?

     
2:00 pm on Jul 30, 2018 (gmt 0)

Moderator from GB 

WebmasterWorld Administrator ianturner is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:July 19, 2001
posts: 3667
votes: 55


Having run a few experiments on this I'm finding that smaller text for mobiles consistently beats 16px for bounce rates and page views.

So does Google penalise for less than 16px? and/or are the user metrics more important these days?
3:31 pm on July 30, 2018 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Nov 13, 2016
posts:1194
votes: 285


This is something which is certainly taken in consideration in the "user experience" factors. Lighthouse's report mentions when fonts or elements are too small; this can be a good indication.
3:58 pm on July 30, 2018 (gmt 0)

Administrator from US 

WebmasterWorld Administrator not2easy is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Dec 27, 2006
posts:4510
votes: 348


Probably related to the device/pixel ratio because on mobile, a pixel is not a pixel exactly. That's why I never alter the "initial-scale=1" in the viewport meta, it allows the device to calculate consistently. It is confusing for some that a 5.5" screen may have a resolution of 1080 x 1920 or more and the viewport setting allows the device to translate.

Google used to have a page solely for this topic but it redirects now to one of those "#" anchors that doesn't link well here: https://developers.google.com/web/fundamentals/design-and-ux/responsive/#optimize_text_for_reading
8:25 pm on July 30, 2018 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member lucy24 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Apr 9, 2011
posts:15874
votes: 870


How old is your target audience?
9:34 pm on July 30, 2018 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member aristotle is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Aug 4, 2008
posts:3660
votes: 373


I've always used 120% of whatever the user's default size is.
Is this too big for mobile?
8:20 am on July 31, 2018 (gmt 0)

Moderator from GB 

WebmasterWorld Administrator ianturner is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:July 19, 2001
posts: 3667
votes: 55


I've got a target audience that includes all ages - probably students and the over 50's are the biggest segments.

May be worth thinking about segmenting by age group and delivering different sized content.
10:15 am on July 31, 2018 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member keyplyr is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Sept 26, 2001
posts:12913
votes: 893


As not2easy explained, the display device viewport, if set to 1, will adjust the font size accordingly if you're using normal readability.

I use 12px for most desktop article content and it displays well (according to Google) on mobile.

Age is unrelated on mobile and should not be a factor. Pinch'n Zoom is supported on all modern smart phones.
4:02 pm on July 31, 2018 (gmt 0)

Administrator from US 

WebmasterWorld Administrator not2easy is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Dec 27, 2006
posts:4510
votes: 348


I've always used 120% of whatever the user's default size is.
Is this too big for mobile?

For this, all you need to do is go to GSC, use Fetch as Google, click Mobile and you can see for yourself whether that is too big. The reason I suggest that to see it is because it is impossible to hand out a good answer without knowing a lot more than the font setting. See it as Google sees it and you can decide.

6:05 pm on July 31, 2018 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member aristotle is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Aug 4, 2008
posts:3660
votes: 373


Thanks not2easy
I just checked several of my sites (all have a responsive design) in GSC , and they all look good in both desktop and mobile renders.

But in the real world of various mobile browsers, with various settings, things aren't as good. I checked several browsers on an android tablet (Chrome, Firefox, and Opera Mini). Chrome for Android inexplicably shows one site with very large text characters, but resizes the images to hardly bigger than a postage stamp. The other two browsers show smaller text characters than I would prefer.

So the GSC tool may not tell the whole story when you consider various browsers and various settings.
8:39 pm on July 31, 2018 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from GB 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member redbar is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Oct 14, 2013
posts:3329
votes: 546


But in the real world of various mobile browsers, with various settings, things aren't as good.


Precisely why I have so many phones and tablets plus about 30 people I WhatsApp whenever I want anything checking ... cheap, cheerful and usually instantaneous answers!