How to make your WordPress blog mobile friendly

Earlier this week (the free blog hosting site) announced that they’re including two new mobile friendly templates in their offering.

This is absolutely awesome. I say this from the perspective of a iPod Touch owner who often surfs blogs on the device.

The more mobile friendly websites get, the more people will be able to find what they’re looking for, when they need it, wherever they are.

In fact you’ll find that this blog (yes the one you’re reading now) is mobile enabled (has been for months) using the same theme. – WPTouch by Brave New Code.

As a stand-alone mobile theme, it’s quite powerful:

  • User-selected theme toggle
    (between WPtouch view and your site’s regular look)
  • iPhone-like application appearance, functions
  • AJAX, jQuery & effects in only 56kb
  • The ability to turn advanced javascript effects & ajax on/off
  • Full WordPress search, pages, archives, categories, tags and links support
  • Theme native social bookmarking support
  • iPhone/iPod touch native post e-mailing support
  • Ajax comments, posted in real time
  • Ajaxed pagination (users can browse posts like YouTube videos)
  • Admin selectable custom icons for pages, logo, bookmark icon
  • Manually edit your site’s title to fit WPtouch
  • Show / Hide post excerpts, customize style in different ways
  • Easily add your own icons to customize menu appearance
  • Admin inclusion/exclusion of site pages shown in the theme’s menu
  • Compatibility suite in admin to inform of add-ons, WordPress version support
  • Favicon fetch & conversion to .png for links displayed using the WP blogroll
  • Support for FlickrRSS plugin, video plugin
  • Automatic Archives page layout (if you have or create a page called ‘Archives’)
  • Automatic Photo page layout with Flickr (if you have or create a page called ‘Photos’ and have the FlickrRSS plugin installed)
  • Automatic Links page layout with your blogroll links listed with their favicons (if you have or create a page called ‘Links’)

So, if you’ve got a WordPress standalone blog, browse on over to BraveNewCode’s site and grab this theme. If you’ve got a blog, do nothing, mobile themes are automatically enabled, though depending on the device the mobile user is using, you’ll either get the WPTouch theme, or a more general mobile theme:

When readers visit a blog from a “modern [mobile] web browser” (i.e. with a iPhone / Android device), they will now “get easy access to posts, pages, and archives” along with “fancy AJAX commenting and post loading.” Visitors accessing sites with other/older mobile phones will be greeted by the WordPress Mobile Edition, which aims to load the site quickly and in a mobile-friendly format.

In a future post I’ll take a look at some of the features of WPTouch that I use here.

Simple update adds iPhone style to your blog

Yesterday I installed the WPTouch plugin on this blog. Basically it’s a WordPress theme that reformats your blog so it’s much more readable on mobile devices (Android, iPhone, iPod Touch). Full list of features here.

More than just a plugin, WPtouch is an entire theme package for your WordPress website. Modeled after Apple’s app store design specs, WPtouch makes your WordPress website load lightning fast on touch mobile devices, show your content beautifully, all while not interfering with your regular theme.

In practice, it’ll take a blog laid out like this (thanks to Thesis):

And make it look like this:

Bonus: WPTouch also includes hooks for website traffic analytic packages, as well as Adsense mobile accounts, so you won’t miss out monetizing your mobile website traffic.