A mobile website is so much more than expanding your customer base. It's also about giving them the best experience they can get with the first view of your business.
Mobile Websites Are Here to Stay
Mobile websites are here to stay. Google's confirmed it, and according to the Pew Research Center:
"As of October 2014:
64% of American adults own a smartphone.
As of January 2014:
- 90% of American adults own a cell phone
- 32% of American adults own an e-reader
- 42% of American adults own a tablet computer" [SOURCE]
What do these numbers tell us? Several things, but the most important to small businesses is that if you are not going after the mobile market, you're leaving money on the table, and saying to your competitors: "take our customers, we don't mind." Having a mobile website is key to your business's success. And a mobile website has surprising benefits.
- Enhance your brand: It is imperative to understand that opinions of brands are formed at every touch point. A mobile optimized website is an effective touch point in brand enhancement. Customers will value a business with a web accessible from their mobile devices more than a business without an optimized web. Furthermore, the optimized web is an effective platform to update and reply to your consumers.
- Multiple Access Points: An optimized web ensures that your business is accessible from multiple points at the same time. This means that a large pool of consumers can access your business in a cost-effective way. There are no third party costs or customer effort required for different devices to access the content.
- New advertising opportunities: Mobile advertising lets businesses reach their target market with precision. However, a business must have an optimized web to benefit from this rapidly growing advertising. Sending customers to a desktop website from a mobile link will not likely result in the desired return on investment.
- Quick Downloads: Mobile sites are optimized to load quicker than desktop sites and thus, consumers will have less waiting time for information and more reading time.
- Improved SEO: Today’s search engines support mobile optimized websites and thus, a mobile optimized web will likely rank higher in mobile searches than a non-optimized website.
Designing an Effective Mobile Website
An effective approach on how to develop a user-centered mobile website is all about the user experience. Coming up with a user-centered mobile website design relies on user involvement throughout the design process. The aim is to come up with solutions that users will find useful and will want to use.
In order to achieve this objective, you must first understand your users that will need their issues to be prioritized. Some of the issues that you should address include why the users would access your site on a mobile, what features they would like to use and the devices they will most likely use. Once the groundwork is finished, now it is the time to design considerations that will determine the user experience.
Ultimately, designing a website that is geared towards a mobile user is all about the right features, not necessarily less features. That way you know you've got a professionally designed mobile website.
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