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Why Mobile is a Critical Part of Your Online Strategy

Don’t have a mobile-friendly website? You’re not just missing out on a good opportunity—you’re losing potential customers.

According to the Pew Institute, 56% of Americans already own smartphones, and that number is just going to continue to grow. There are also 1.2 billion people worldwide who use smartphones to access the web. And if those people discover that your site is a jumbled mess or at all hard to read when they pull it up on their phone, you can be sure that they’ll waste no time in finding a more mobile-friendly competitor to turn to.

Still not convinced that you need to optimize for mobile? Here are a few more reasons why it’s essential that you have a good mobile website.
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People like instant gratification.

Sure, many of your customers might also have computers in addition to their smartphones, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re going to get off their smartphone and turn on their computer. In fact, a study by Google found that 77% of mobile searches are carried out in a place where a computer is readily available.

So what’s going on here? Ease of use is a huge factor. If someone has their smartphone in their pocket or somewhere within arms’ reach, they’re more likely to use that to do some quick online research than to get up, start up their computer, log in, and pull up a web browser.

And don’t think that a potential customer is going to switch from their phone to their computer just because they have trouble accessing your site on their phone – they’re just going to find another site to browse.

People follow up on mobile research.

75% of people who do mobile research will follow up with an average of two actions. That could include doing more research on a particular product, exploring other areas of your site, making a phone call, visiting your store, talking to friends about your brand, or (ideally) making a purchase.

Why are people so good about following up when they’re on their phones? A large part of it may be because it’s so easy to carry out multiple actions all on the same device.

Mobile sites are necessary if you want to be a serious competitor.

As I’ve hinted above, failing to have a site that’s optimized for mobile devices doesn’t just cause you to lose out on customers, it actually drives customers to your competitors. One survey found that 61% of consumers who visit a site that isn’t mobile-friendly will go to a competitor’s site to find what they’re looking for.

Again, it’s about instant gratification. If people are looking for a particular product or resource and they can find it in multiple places, they’re going to go to the place that offers them the best buying or browsing experience right now.

How to Make the Most of Mobile

Hopefully at this point you’re realizing it’s not a question of whether or not you and your company should invest in mobile marketing, but of how best to do it. Keep the following tips in mind when you’re coming up with your mobile strategy.

Choose your format. If you haven’t already gone mobile, there are a few ways you can do so:

  1. Create a separate mobile site – This is probably the most straightforward option. Businesses can use tools like Mobify to easily create a mobile site on a relatively small budget. However, the most inexpensive options often only allow for limited content and limited accessibility.
  2. Build a responsive site – These sites involve a web designer creating a site that will function well on both mobile devices and computers. While setting up this kind of site can be a little more expensive, it ensures that your site will look good (and work) on all screen sizes, and it will allow you to be better prepared for the rise of even more forms of mobile devices in the future.
  3. Develop a mobile app – Mobile apps tend to be the most expensive option, but can be valuable for companies that are task-oriented (for example, think about a pizza chain like Domino’s where the basic task is for customers to order pizza). Customers can download the app onto their phone and access what they’re most likely to need from the company rather than going to the trouble of opening up a web browser and searching through their site.

Make it look good. I’d like to say that people don’t judge a book by its cover and will keep browsing a mobile site on their phone even it’s an unattractive mess, but that’s just not true. You need to test your site out and make sure that it looks good on all types of screens, including smartphones, tablets, laptops, and desktop computers.

Make it easy to use. Even more important than making your site look good is making it as easy as possible to use. If you have a purchasing option on your mobile site, make sure the purchase button is large and easy to find. You should also make sure that users don’t need to click through a labyrinth of different links and pages just to find what they want. Keep your site as simple as possible, and include easy-to-find tabs for the things your users will want most, like contact information, product listings, and customer service.

Keep up with mobile device trends. Even if you already have a great mobile site, you can’t rest on your laurels. Mobile technology is just going to keep evolving, and your website needs to evolve with it. If your company doesn’t have a division that specifically focuses on mobile marketing, make sure that you keep an eye on mobile trends and bring someone in to update your site when necessary.

As mentioned above, having a responsive website is one good way to future-proof your site because it works across all devices. Even if your site is set up through a platform like WordPress, you still have the option to use specific themes that are responsive. If you don’t yet have a responsive site and are ready to upgrade, talk to your web designer about this option.

41 thoughts on “Why Mobile is a Critical Part of Your Online Strategy”

  1. hey, first of all this is very much important topic. Some where I read facebook’s 40% revenue comes from mobile advertising, it means desktop traffic is shifting to smartphones and this trend is not going to stop.I can recommend if your site is ready, you can use mobile friendly WordPress plugins like wp wouch pro. great article. 🙂

  2. Having a mobile version of your website is very important to make sure that you don’t lose visitors or opportunities. Even in my case as a realtor in Charleston SC real estate, I can attest that more and more people are using their phones for home search. I therefore make sure my website for promoting home listings is mobile friendly. Thanks for the valuable post!

    As more and more people are engaging in mobile transactions(people see products in their devices through social media sites like Facebook, Google+ or Twitter, up to e-commerce stores such as ebay or amazon), you should give weight to the power of mobile devices in reaching your target market.

    Thanks for sharing such wonderful tips!

  3. I have to admit that people using my cell phone for their advertising is a bit of a frustration with me. I hate it when you are looking up something or you are using you r app and all of the sudden an advertisement for something pops up in the middle of it. I don’t think this is a good way to advertise because you are just making people made more than anything else.

  4. Mobile marketing and mobile advertising is a huge deal these days and the more mobile you can get the better but you also have to keep in mind the charges to the customer for that mobile capability and if you as the company can take some of that off of them they are going to be more likely to use you mobile options then they are someone elses.

  5. Using a cell phone like this is much the same as using any other form a social media correct? I would think that doing it this way would cost more though when you consider the plans that are in place and the charges tagged to them. Would this cost the company using it or the person receiving it? This would be like walking a field of land minds to me.

    1. Thank you for leaving a comment and your kind words. Mobile represents a massive shift in the world of marketing and if you don’t jump on it, it will leave you behind… faster than ever!

  6. Totally agree with this post. If your site is not mobile friendly you are in for a big loss of customers. Just think of the new iPhone 6 Plus upgrade, that is the size of a tablet just about, that should give people a clue much people are using their phones to access the internet, do their shopping etc. Great advice here.

  7. This is a THOROUGH yet professional post.
    I strongly agree that most sales happen through mobile websites, and support you to encourage people developing mobile apps and websites. However, it isn’t as easy as it seems. It involves a lot of funds, and much more. Please suggest some eco-friendly app developers!
    Enjoyed this post a lot and have recommended it to all friends.
    I am sure it will help me in all of my business endeavours.
    Thanks a ton.

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