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The Importance of a Working Mobile Site

By Barbara Beauregard   |    June 5, 2015   |    11:40 AM

Consumers are moving away from the desktop towards a more mobile way of life. It's important to have a highly functional mobile-friendly site in order to optimize ease of use and search engine optimization. Being mobile-friendly does not simply mean that your website can be viewed on mobile devices. A mobile-friendly site should be designed specifically for smaller screens, allowing easy navigation via larger touch-screen buttons, and only display relevant information and content for the users’ needs. Here are five reasons that a mobile-friendly website is absolutely essential to your small business.

1. Mobile Drives Traffic

It’s becoming more and more obvious that users are turning far more often to their mobile devices in order to conduct their web searches. Not only are smartphone users engaging with mobile websites but they are also using pads and other handheld devices not only for search but to watch TV, listen to podcasts while they commute to work, and even working on the go. Just a simple search of the statistics that emerge around mobile web use will blow your mind (75% of Americans admit bringing their phone to the bathroom, for one disturbing example.) It’s a plain fact that the future of search is mobile and companies and stores that don’t invest in making themselves available to clients and customers on the go will see their search rank suffer as a result.

2. Mobile Users Exhibit Different Habits

Mobile users behave differently from those working or playing on desktop computers. Like the difference between a librarian and a teenager on Twitter, the way they digest information is dramatically different, with mobile users generally showing a preference towards the absorption of information in quick, easily digestible bites. Customer profiles show that mobile purchases are often impulse buys and some surveys show that mobile users spend more money per purchase than desktop users or traditional shoppers. This shows the importance of optimizing your mobile experience to ensure that users don’t deviate from their normal shopping patterns because your mobile website is unwieldy, overly complex, or non-intuitive.

This underscores the importance of optimizing your mobile experience to match a visitor's needs and behaviors in the context of how they will most likely be browsing your website. By making the path to purchase or enquiry simple and intuitive you'll align more precisely with mobile users who need information rapidly to make decisions on the fly.

3. Mobile Optimization Shows Off Your Brand

It’s simple; people will like your site better when you give them a more satisfying mobile experience, which means they will like your company and what you have to offer better. When you invest in the process of optimizing your website, it engages users on a more personal level, fosters trust, and brings customers closer to your brand. And users won’t just take the time to seek you out later when they’re closer to a desktop computer; they’ll go visit your competition instead, and you will have potentially lost that customer permanently.\

4. Mobile Optimization Turns Visitors Into Buyers

It’s an unfortunate fact that websites built for desktops are way too complicated. Viewed on mobile devices, it’s difficult to click on the right link, valuable information like hours and contact info can be obscured, and drop-down menus can be especially awkward. Mobile optimization makes this type of information clear and easy to click. Users are far more likely to make purchases and interact with a brand that pays attention and invests in their users’ mobile shopping experience.

5. Optimized Mobile Experiences Don’t Drive Away Customers

Content that looks great on a widescreen desktop display often looks terrible on a mobile device. Visitors who have to zoom and pinch and squint at illegible websites are likely to abandon your website and maybe your business entirely. If this happens, your bounce rate on mobile devices is going to shoot through the roof. By engaging visitors with an optimal mobile experience that is intuitive and easy to use, you are more likely to engage visitors longer and encourage more of them to buy your product or engage with your firm.