Optimising for mobile isn't simply about making your web site 'responsive'. It's about understanding the new realities and the disruptive nature of technology. The challenge for small businesses is to adapt quickly to this change and respond to the needs of customers.
Real time now
The traditional business, or 'bricks and mortar' knows that opening hours are less relevant. Customers want a good experience, real time information and access to your products and services when it suits them.
And with mobile customers potentially 'just around the corner' the numbers are on local search are compelling:
- 85% of smartphone users have searched local info
- 81% called a business after searching
- 40% visited in person
- 35% called a business after searching
As never before local consumers have more choice and easier access to compare products and services. How are local businesses responding to this challenge?
The first step to engagement with the mobile consumer is to make your site easy to use on a mobile. 57% of users say they won't recommend a business with a poorly designed mobile site.
Real interaction on your web site
Adding functionality and turning your site into something more interactive for customers pays dividends too. With HTML5 web designers can turn your web site into something that your customers can really use and actually do business with you, on any device at any time.
For example the car repair garage that allows its busy customers to book their car in for an MOT themselves via their mobile has a firm grasp on how they can add value to their brand and keep their customers fully engaged. Not only that but it improves workflow and internal business processes too.
Optimising your content
If consumers may be less unforgiving of superfluous content on desktop web sites, mobile users who may be 'on the go' or in need of finding information quickly are going to lose patience fast. In fact Google estimates that 40% of them have turned to a competitor after a bad mobile experience. A bad experience means lost business.
Not just a design issue
So 'going mobile' is not just about the design of your web site, it's about understanding how best to deliver your brand messages. In any context your content should be fit for purpose, and should only exist to inspire action or help a user on their journey. The rest is going to be ignored or cause confusion.
Social on mobile
Google says 'social and mobile are fundamentally intertwined', and with people socially active on their smartphones using Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and more it is vitally important to consider how well your own web site fits in with those ongoing conversations.
If you're just getting to grips with mobile then where is the best place to start?
1. Look at your Analytics
This will give you an idea of current traffic to your web site, check that trend over the last 12 months to see how its growing.
2. Be your customer
Try searching for your and take that journey as they would. Is it easy, enjoyable, rewarding - or even possible?!
3. Build a mobile optimsed site
Sites that are not optimised for mobile could be losing you business.
If you'd like to know more about optimising for mobile please get in touch.