How Important Is a Mobile-Optimized Site for Your Business?
Having a website for your small business is important. We have explained this to some length in the past. However, having a website is not enough anymore as all you are really doing is catching up to where businesses were over a decade ago. Indeed, businesses have long used the internet as a cheap marketing medium for their companies. You can present everything you feel best reflects the uniqueness of your business and doing so has paid dividends. The times have changed though. Fewer and fewer people are using the traditional desktop PC to access the internet and a report out this week showed that PC sales are expected to decline for first time since 2001. Moreover, it’s not that everyone who needs a computer has one, it’s that they are switching to mobile devices. Just look at the growth of mobile since 2008 (see below). The rate has been fast and although we are still only at 10 percent traffic share, this number is expected to increase by over 300 percent by 2015.
What is the takeaway from this? Well it’s obvious if you have ever tried accessing a tradition internet site from a mobile site. The first things you’ll notice are that all of the images and text seems scaled incorrectly. This makes sense considering that websites were not originally designed for a sub 5 inch screen. This is all assuming that your page even loads on your phone allowing you to see the scaling errors. This is referring to the lag it takes to load traditional content on a mobile device. First most of this content is not needed and therefore hogs up the slower mobile broadband speeds. Also, mobile devices are less powerful and have less RAM than PCs and therefore can’t support all of the rich content available on a normal site meaning that viewing and interacting with a company’s website can be lagging and glitch prone. All of this aggravates would be visitors and may force them to look elsewhere, specifically to a company that offers a mobile optimized site or dedicated app. These two newer mediums cut out all of the bloat from a traditional site and allow it to be viewed smoothly on any mobile device and it is a must for your small business. Mashable continues, “Yet many businesses have not yet optimized their websites for mobile, frustrating visitors with tricky navigation and slow loading times. Jesse Haines, group marketing manager for Google Mobile Ads, told Mashable that a survey of major advertisers in early 2011 showed only 21% had launched a mobile-friendly site. A 2012 L2 study of the top 100 fashion, beauty, retail, hospitality, and watch and jewelry brands found that only two-thirds had mobile-optimized sites, and yet a third of those did not allow consumers to shop from their sites. If you’re in the business of ecommerce, those figures should help you benchmark what you’re already losing in dollars, but a recent survey from Google underlines the damage you might also be doing to your brand by not having your site optimized for mobile. The survey, which tallied responses from 1,088 U.S. adult smartphone owners, found that:
- Mobile sites lead to mobile purchases. This is a no-brainer: Shoppers are more likely to buy a product or service if your site is optimized for mobile. Three-fourths said they are more likely to return to a site in the future if the experience on mobile is good.
- If your site isn’t optimized for mobile, shoppers will go elsewhere. The majority of participants in the survey said that if they can’t find what they’re looking for on your site, they’ll sooner seek out a competitor’s mobile-friendly site instead of switching to a PC to revisit yours.
- A bad mobile experience can damage a company’s brand. A bad mobile experience can create bad feelings about your company. Nearly half of participants in the survey said they feel frustrated and annoyed when they happen across a site that’s not mobile-friendly, and that it makes them feel like a company doesn’t care about their business. More than half said a poor mobile experience makes them less likely to engage with a company in the future..."
Source - Mashable