Website Design June 14th, 2012
The potential for marketing on mobile devices, and particularly smartphones, is simply awesome. The amount of consumers adopting smartphones and tablets is growing, and just as important, so is their search behavior. The majority of the time that they are engaged on the internet with the devices, people use them to surf the web, shop and find local information. The fact that 9% of all web searches are from mobile devices speaks to this and it will only increase. This is the primary reason for businesses to conduct mobile marketing, and at the very least optimize their web presence for these mobile web users by establishing a mobile site. However, much to the dismay of mobile users everywhere, not many businesses have invested the small amount required to strategically design and support a mobile version of their website.
Why Dismay? Simple, users generally find it very difficult to navigate standard websites on smartphones and easily become frustrated. Websites that are not designed for mobile browsing tend to push mobile users off of them, potentially losing out on purposeful browsing and eventual conversions. The best SEO and internet marketing companies work with businesses to guide them in exactly this process to take advantage of the opportunity. A recent study from mongoosemetrics dove into this issue and looked at 1 million websites and their mobile preparedness. Shockingly, or maybe not, just 9% were designed with mobile devices in mind, meaning they could be comfortably searched on a smartphone or tablet. From that point, there was a slight jump to 14.8% for sites in the top 100,000 of the Quantcast Top Million.
This percentage simply means that many businesses are not taking advantage of the opportunity to deliver a certain quality to potential customers who are using search engines on their mobile devices and browsing sites. Doing so would help gain more web traffic and increasing the user experience once they are there.
Which Companies Need A Mobile Site?
All companies that have a web presence can benefit from creating a mobile website, but the benefit for some is naturally greater given their industry. Popular websites that receive high traffic on the standard web will receive continued traffic on mobile. But, those sites that offer content that users can access on the go and that are relevant to searching on the go will receive the greatest benefit, such as ecommerce sites, review sites, and others. With this in mind, according to results from Adobe’s 2011 Mobile Experience Survey, 80% of users have a preference for mobile sites when searching for reviews and the prices of products. The proof is clear.
These sites provide information that is important for people as they are on the move allowing them to browse for leisure but also make decisions on purchases, researching different items, and other activities. The sector with the highest relevance though is the local market. One of the most frequent searches on mobile devices is for local business information and part of this searching process includes users visiting the website of the business, and if it is mobile ready, users will be able to navigate the site and get the information they need about services, products, location, and contact numbers.
What Should the Site Include?
The main elements of the mobile site are the design and content. These elements work together to create a site that is easy to navigate and also delivers the information from the company that users seek. For design, some tabs may appear differently and they may be organized in a new way consolidating information. The architecture and mapping of the site will likely look different as well attempting to keep the flow through the sites’ content as natural as possible given the new design. With content, companies can get assistance from the best search and mobile marketing companies to determine how much information is appropriate and the types of media that will work best. Loading can be an issue, so companies can determine the value that extra media could bring and instead may opt for simple, yet compelling text and limited imagery. Either way, greater mobile functioning will bring return in the long-run for most companies.
Background on Will Schnieder (Winsights): I am the head of insightQuote, Inc., a company that provides businesses with a reliable method for getting quotes for a range of business services. I also operate SEOCompanies.com, a search platform for quality SEO companies, and I write guest blogs mostly on search engine optimization, mobile marketing, and other related internet marketing subjects. Note: Image is licensed from Shutterstok.