August 9, 2012
With the Internet at our fingertips, today’s business atmosphere is more competitive than ever. In this sink-or-swim environment, it’s critical to respond to your customers’ needs and expectations.
Is your business readily assessable to existing and potential customers? With over 70% of local searches currently being conducted on a mobile device, does your online presence come across as you want to be perceived? You could be losing sales and business opportunities because of poor usability on the small screen.
The majority of websites online now were designed to be viewed on a desktop or laptop computer. The smaller screen sizes of tablets and smartphones sometimes display blocks of text that are too tiny to be readable. Attempts to expand page content can be cumbersome, requiring scrolling from side to side as well as vertically. Frequently, images do not fit on the screen, links are not fingertip-friendly, content is too lengthy to load quickly, and Flash animation does not work.
According to Google,
- 74% of smartphone shoppers make a purchase after using their device to help them make buying decisions
- 88% of those who look for local information on their smartphones take action within a day, and…
- 60% of users expect a mobile site to load in three seconds or less.
- It’s predicted that by 2014, more people will access the Internet from a mobile device than a desktop computer. However, at this point in time, only half of all small businesses have even checked the usability of their website on a smartphone.
Mobile App vs. Mobile–Friendly Web Design
When it comes to offering usable content on mobile devices, your options are native apps and mobile-friendly web design. Native apps require cross platform assets and skills to build (each must be developed separately to operate on different kinds of devices). However, if mobile-friendly web design is applied, you’ll only need to develop one mobile version of your site that will adapt on all smartphones and tablets. In that respect, mobile-friendly web design is more cost-effective.
With more wireless connection points available and increasing phone signal strength, mobile-friendly sites commonly load and work quickly. Native apps need to be downloaded through an app store and gain app store approval before becoming available. Additionally, they take up space. While the storage capabilities of smart phones are growing, native apps are becoming more advanced, and they will be demanding more space as well.
Finally, mobile optimized websites have a great advantage when it comes to visibility. Users can find your business online with the direct URL or through a search engine --the same way they find you on your primary website. Your website can be setup to automatically detect the device and present the appropriate version, computer or mobile friendly.
Overall, traditional marketing methods are changing quickly with new technologies going forward. Why risk annoying customers or driving them away to competitors? Make sure your business is up to par with today’s standards and new media, mobilize your website!
See how your current desktop website renders on mobile phones. Use Brave River’s new mobile preview tool
to find out.