Using a computer to connect to the Internet and interact in cyberspace is still a relatively new concept in terms of human progress, but it already seems old-fashioned compared to how we use smartphones today. Technology is developing at the speed of light and it takes a lot of effort to keep your web presence hip and relevant to the world.
Considering how your website looks on smartphones and tablets is very important – a large percentage of your traffic is likely to come from non-computer sources. If these users can’t load a nice-looking, relevant page in a matter of seconds, they are likely to bounce off to the next thing on their list.
It’s crucial to understand that people are adapting and adjusting to new technology almost as quickly as it’s being developed. This means that cool new stuff can become outdated – even obsolete – before you even have a chance to get used it! But c’est la vie, and the best thing you can do is:
- Learn what people are doing right now, and
- Meet them there
For example, it seems like people are tending to avoid talking to strangers on the phone. They prefer other alternatives to calling an 800 number during business hours, so you should consider making sure people can reach you via some or all of the following: contact form, email, social media, online chat, text … and a phone number just in case.
Every business and industry is different – and changing constantly – and you need to explore the data and options and make the best plan that you can.
That being said, simply having a website with some product info and your contact information doesn’t cut it anymore … it’s like opening a retail warehouse and only letting people in the back window. You need to open all the doors and windows that you can find! Some people like to walk in, some like to drive-thru, some want to land their helicopters on your roof. You want as many people crawling into your building as possible – no matter how they want to do it.
I’m not sure Mobile is for me …
It may not be … but it probably is. If you have an existing website with analytics, poke around and see how many of your visitors are coming in on mobile devices. Also, there are some very cool mobile stats (by DigitalBuzz) which are quite compelling. Have a look!
Okay, okay I get it! Now what?
If you already have a website, look at it on as many different devices as you can and see how it loads. Look through your analytics and see what kind of devices & browsers people are using to view your website. Try to appeal to as many user styles as your budget will allow – open all the doors and windows and install some new ones!
If you’re about to build a new site, do it right the first time!
Either way, you also have to think about mobilized content: what are people looking for on your site when they’re using mobiles? Do they want to scroll through long product pages, read about your company history, and look through employee profiles like they would on a computer? Not so much … they’re probably wanting to get directions, do a quick search for products, or get a two-sentence overview of who you are and what you do.
Content can’t just be made to fit on a smaller screen – it also has to make sense for the mobile use case.
Give Us A Buzz
Give us a buzz and we’ll help walk you through it – we have been designing mobile websites since before the first iPhone release (and way before tablets!), and we’d be happy to apply our experience and understanding to your online presence.