The Dire Importance of Mobile Websites for Reaching a Newer Generation of Customers

There’s no question anymore that mobile devices have become ingrained in people’s lives around the world. Today there are nearly 2 billion smartphones worldwide and a total of 7.7 billion mobile devices. Consumers are becoming increasingly dependent on their devices for their everyday activities such as checking their email and browsing the web. They literally bring it everywhere they go as 75 percent of consumers admit to bringing their phone with them to the bathroom. It is clear mobile is already important and yet many brands still have not optimized their website for mobile.

What is Mobile Friendly?

Just because you can view your site on a smartphone or tablet doesn’t mean it is optimized for mobile. If you approach your site with a mobile second mindset, you are losing precious customers. 61 percent of users will move on to another site if they cannot find what they want immediately and many will immediately have a negative impression of your brand. This is because a site made for desktops will not scale properly to mobile devices and ultimately lead to a poor user experience. Images will be cut off, text will be unreadable and the navigation buttons will be too small and close together for users to tap on properly. If you want to retain your customer-base you need to ensure your site:

  • Loads quickly – the biggest culprits that slows down page load time are images. Keep the amount of high resolution images to a minimum.

  • Is easy to use – mobile devices are based on touch technology so you need to ensure your links and buttons are easy to tap. If they’re too close together visitors will be frustrated after hitting the wrong button several times.

  • Requires no zooming or horizontal scrolling – visitors to your site are impatient and don’t want to spend time trying to adjust the site to fit the screen or scroll to read all of the text. What might seem like small annoyances can add up and lead visitors to your competitors.

Ways to Mobile Optimization

There are two types of mobile design.

  1. Dedicated mobile site – you’ve likely visited sites on your mobile device that read As you might have guessed the m in front signifies the site you are visiting is made specifically for mobile. Many designers consider this an “old” way to manage your mobile presence as it comes with many pitfalls such as: duplicate content, multiple URLs, separate updates to mobile and main site. Still, if your current site isn’t optimized for mobile, this might be a great option as it doesn’t require a complete redesign and will at least give you a mobile presence. As well, you can completely customize the mobile experience for users to streamline the exact actions they take on your site.

  2. Responsive Mobile Design – As the name suggests, this design allows your site to adjust appropriately to different screen sizes. This only requires you to have one template and one URL for consistent content and appearance. If you don’t already employ responsive design on your site, this option could cost money as it is much more complex to code.

Responsive design might seem like the best option, but it is not a silver bullet. Sites that do not take a mobile first approach will still be plagued with many of the same issues as a standard site such as slow loading time and difficult to read text. The easiest way to avoid these issues is to test your site across as many devices as possible.

Embrace Mobile

Every year the number of mobile users grows and with it the amount of time and money they spend on their devices. In 2014 mobile internet usage actually surpassed the desktop and m-commerce is expected to reach $133 billion by 2018. If you don’t already have a mobile presence, now is the time as this move will push you ahead of your competitors and future-proof your business.

Coastline Marketing Group specializes in internet marketing and mobile website development. We proudly serve the Monterey, Salinas CA area. Please contact us for information regarding our services.

Content provided by Ivan Serrano