Did you know that in the UK, multi-platform users consume 23% more digital content than PC-only users? Or that 69% of the UK digital population are now multiple device users. And that Retail is the Fastest Growing Usage Category on Smartphones in Italy? *
I know that’s a lot of numbers to throw at you but these stats underline the importance of being multi-platform. With that in mind, do you have a mobile strategy for your business? And what content will you provide on your mobile website?
Three most popular types of Mobile Websites
#1. Mobile friendly – this means that your current site can be viewed on a mobile device and will work but will require pinching and zooming to access and read the content.
- Pro – none (!)
- Con – a lot of people will leave the site due to the bad user experience
#2. Responsive website – also known as a fluid website, this type responds to the screen size. The site also responds to the environment based on screen size, platform and orientation, making it easy for the user to navigate without the need for zooming and pinching.
- Pro – it updates automatically when you update the main website as they are ‘one and the same’ and is also a good user experience
- Con – can contain too much information as it’s the same as your desktop site.
#3. Custom mobile site – this site is designed separately to the desk top version. It may look slightly different and may contain a different navigation and structure.
- Pro – allows you to customise the experience for the user
- Con – will need to be updated separately to the main site so double the work
Two things you should never have to do on a mobile site
- Zoom and pinch to make the content larger and able to read
- Horizontal scrolling. Vertical scrolling is fine as visitors will need to scroll down to see more content but a mobile site should not require horizontal scrolling.
Both of these will result in a bad user experience and a high percentage of exits from your site.
Now it’s time to get started on your own mobile site….
Seven of the most important things to think about when creating a mobile site
- Will the site be mobile-specific or responsive? If mobile-specific, you can customise but if responsive, it will be a replica of the desktop version so it is important to consider the mobile user and the desktop user when developing your content plan and structure.
- Always include a click-to-call phone number. Think about people on the move, how can you make it easy for them to make contact with you? A click-to-call button allows them to click the button and call you easily. Once you have them on the phone, it’s now up to you to close the sale…
- Location details are important. Think about not only the people browsing looking for information, but also consider the people travelling to you and looking for location details. Include an interactive map, gps co-ordinates and an outline of the best route from major roads and infrastructure.
- Link to main website – this is really important if you have created a mobile-specific version of your site. People will browse using multiple devices. If someone spots something when navigating your desktop and then tries to find it on the mobile-specific version, if this content has not been included in the mobile version, you need to ensure they can click a link to visit the main desktop version of the site. (This goes against what I said above but it is different if someone chooses to go to the desktop version over being forced to use it.)
- What information do your mobile users need? It is important to test different content and different layouts so you can gauge what will work best on the mobile site.
- Booking or e-commerce elements MUST be mobile friendly. There is nothing worse that bringing people to your beautiful mobile site and then when they proceed to ‘book’ or ‘buy’, they are taken to a page where they have to start pinching and zooming to be able to complete the transaction. If you do this, expect to see a large exit rate!
- Ensure your mobile site is optimised for search engines – here are some tips from Google themselves on SEO and Mobile SEO
No matter what your product or service, it’s likely your customers are on the move and are accessing your website on mobile devices as much as desktops. With that in mind, it’s time to treat your mobile presence as important as your ‘traditional’ digital marketing strategy.
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