Smartphones are growing in popularity, and there are now over 4 billion mobile devices in use worldwide. As the technology behind the phones develops, consumers are no longer limited to simply calling and texting. People can now use their mobile phones to access websites, transfer money, and buy products online.
As this shift in buying patterns continues, more and more businesses are choosing to create a mobile optimized version of their website. By providing customers with an easy and accessible way to connect with your business from anywhere and at any time, you can take advantage of the relatively untapped mobile business market.
What Is A Mobile Website?
All standard websites can be accessed via a smartphone, but mobile websites are specifically designed to suit the device’s small screen, slower speed, and limited functions. Mobile sites show users exactly the same vital information, but in a way that it is easier and faster to navigate. By creating a mobile website for your business, you will be able to make the most of the new advertising opportunities that this technology offers.
Since the iPhone was first introduced in 2007, the number of people using smartphones has continued to increase. Studies show that since mid-2011 the average person now spends more time on their mobile phone than they do on their PC. As a result, a more specialized mobile marketplace has emerged.
A mobile website differs from a standard website in a number of ways:
- Pages are more compact so that they are easily viewable on a smaller screen
- Websites load faster to suit limited smartphone capability
- All data is simplified to make it easy to negotiate
- Flash and other multimedia elements that are not compatible with all mobile devices are avoided
How To Create A Successful Mobile Optimized Website
A typical user spends an average of 77 minutes per day on their smartphone, so creating a well-designed, mobile optimized website can boost your business’s online visibility and yield significant results.
Here are just a few features that a successful mobile website should include:
- Simple layout
- One-touch calling
- GPS-enabled map
- One-click ordering
The most important difference between a mobile website and a standard website is the way that it is laid out. Your website needs to be easy to read on a much smaller screen. The key design aim is to prevent the user getting lost in navigation.
Here are just a couple of changes that should be made:
- Remove all non-vital information
- Limit the number of categories you have
- Reduce the number of links per page
- Prioritize links in order of popularity and importance
- Avoid using forms or tables
- Fast download speeds
The larger the data size of a page, the longer it will take to load. This is true of every website, but keeping data size low is particularly important in those designed for smartphones. If your website is slow to load, users can quickly get frustrated and move onto other sites. The more pages they are able to view in a set time, the more likely they are to see something they want to buy.
Integrate with map
A wide range of mapping functions can be included as part of a mobile website. The technology is able to alert a customer when they are close to your premises or navigate them directly to it. This feature is particularly useful for small and local businesses that often go unnoticed when standing next to larger chain stores.
Connect with offline media
]Smartphones are carried with people wherever they go, so the devices have an unprecedented ability to connect online and offline forms of advertising. QR codes are scanned by a phone’s camera and will connect the web browser to a specific webpage, such as a landing page or buying page. The code can be added to magazines, posters, brochures, and any other form of print advertisement.
The Results You Can Expect From A Mobile Website
By creating a mobile optimized version of your website, you can increase your sales, boost your visibility, and make a positive difference to your business’s image.
Here are just a few of the possible advantages:
- Higher Google ranking
The higher up that a website appears in search engine results, the more likely it is to be visited by customers. This is especially true of the mobile Internet because scrolling through results on a smartphone can be difficult. Search engines like Google are able to recognize when a person is using a smartphone and will feature mobile optimized websites higher in their search results. Your easy-to-read site will have an automatic advantage over your less up-to-date competitors.
- Positive customer experience
Once a customer enters your site it is important that they have an enjoyable experience. If a webpage is difficult to read, then a user looking for specific information will simply move onto a more suitable site. By having a clear and concise layout, you can ensure that each visit creates a positive impression of your business.
- More sales
Expanding your website to meet the needs of the mobile market is an ideal way drive up your profits. Making the buying process as simple as possible and reducing the number of steps it takes to get from landing page to purchase is key in maximizing sales.
- A better brand image
Having a user-friendly, mobile optimized web page will give your business a contemporary, technology aware image. As mobile websites continue to become a mainstream reality, businesses without them are being left behind.
How To Get Started
Creating a mobile website opens your business up to a huge marketplace that is continuing to grow. However, without extensive online marketing knowledge, developing a successful mobile website design and overall advertising strategy can be almost impossible. Awkward navigation, convoluted design, and unnecessary graphics can all frustrate and put off potential customers.
If you are looking for an easier way to make the most of this emerging technology, an online marketing specialist can help you to create and manage your mobile website. Hiring the services of a professional will not only save you time and money in the long run, but it can also give you peace of mind that your website will be a success.