When was the last time you pulled out your smartphone to look for a particular restaurant, find out a business’s hours, or just kill some time? Mobile devices are becoming our go-to method for accessing the web.
Businesses can no longer afford to ignore the fact that billions of people use their phones or tablet to browse the web everyday. If your site is still not mobile-friendly, you’re more than likely turning away hundreds of potential customers.
According to the Pew Internet and American Life Project, nearly half of all U.S. adults use a smartphone. Ninety percent of those smartphone users say they use their device to check their email or surf the web. And that’s not even counting people who use iPads or tablets to access the web.
It’s important to make sure your website is not just mobile accessible, but also easy to navigate and read. Just having a mobile presence isn’t enough. Your mobile website should reflect your brand and leave a good impression with customers. Remember, the person who is viewing your website is, in fact, mobile. They’re looking for a completely different experience than the one they’ll get from your standard website.
A mobile website needs to be simple. Given the restricted amount of screen space, it’s important to figure out what key pieces of information your visitors will be looking for. Keep the number of pages to a minimum in order to allow pages to load faster. By keeping the site layout as streamlined as possible, visitors will be able to get the information they’re looking for as quickly as possible. Finally, don’t sacrifice brand elements for the sake of conserving space. Even though a mobile site will be much more streamlined than your standard site you’ll still want to keep the same branding elements. A mobile site should reflect and promote your brand.
Barbara Findlay Schneck, a small-business strategist, suggests businesses should forget about designing a website specifically for mobile devices and, instead, design a website that can be used on all devices – from tiny phones to huge living room flat screens and, soon, even refrigerator doors and bathroom mirrors.
As technology evolves, so must we. If your website only looks good on a desktop computer, you could be losing a large portion of business.
As you prepare for the future of your business, put website redesign higher on your list so you’ll be ready to reach customers regardless of the device they use — refrigerator doors and bathroom mirrors included.
Written by: Whitney Spicer