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Is Your Website's Mobile Experience Up To Scratch?

In the world in which we live, where everyone is connected in every place at every time, it seems normal to use a Smartphone to search for a specific need while we are travelling to or from work or in a shop to find better offers about a specific product.

As a result, nearly three-quarters of mobile users say that they are more likely to revisit a mobile friendly site. Websites which aren't mobile friendly can annoy visitors and that's bad for business. Consumers are doing more and more on their mobile devices, including product research and shopping.

mobile sites

A recent Google survey of mobile users found that 72 percent of mobile users say it's important to them that websites are mobile friendly, yet 96 percent have visited a site that doesn't work well on their device. Ouch!

With this in mind, it is understandable that 61% of people said that they'd quickly move onto another site if they didn't find what they were looking for right away on a mobile site. As a result of this, 67% of users are more likely to buy from a mobile-friendly site, so if that site is not yours, you’ll be missing out in a big way. Not having a mobile-friendly site helps your competitors.

mobile sites

But this is not the only drawback of not having a mobile friendly site. Google confirms that non mobile friendly sites can hurt a company's reputation so it's not only the sale you can lose through a poor mobile experience. A site which is not designed for mobile can leave users feeling frustrated, and these negative reactions translate directly to the brands themselves. In the survey, 48% of the people said that if a site didn't work well on their Smartphones, it made them feel like the company didn't care about their business.

Think about it for a minute. Imagine you want to search on eBay for a sound system. In which of the screenshots below will you find it easier?


The answer is clear.

Knowing how important it is to have a mobile friendly website for consumers, it is crazy to think that only around 21% of major advertisers had such a site. And a 2012 L2 study of the top 100 fashion, beauty, retail, hospitality, and watch and jewellery brands found that only two-thirds had mobile optimised sites, and a third of those did not allow consumers to purchase from their sites. This implies massive loss for those companies.

When consumers browse on their mobiles, they are looking for big mobile friendly buttons, limited scrolling, quick access to business contact information, "click to call" access, links to the company's social media profiles and a loading time of 5 seconds or less. All of these factors should be carefully considered and planned when thinking about a mobile site.

Having a great mobile site is no longer just about making a few more sales. It's become a critical component of building strong brands, nurturing lasting customer relationships, and making mobile work for you.

Maybe you're at a point where you know you need to have something specific for mobile users but you are not sure whether a mobile site or an app would be better for your business. Well, if that is the case, don't panic. We have a few tips that will definitely help you make a decision.

So what's the big difference between a mobile site and an app? Apps give a great level of flexibility, as they are installed directly on the phone and no browsers are required during usage, while mobile sites are cheaper to develop but not all mobile browsers support the same sets of features. Then, which one should you use? There is no correct answer on this matter: it all depends on your business. And unfortunately, it's tough to have a one-size-fits-all approach to mobile.

If you are asking to yourself how you are going to decide which one should you use, here are some questions you need to ask about your business:

  • Who are my users? Research and try to understand the devices your customers are using to access to your website. For example, if most visitors are coming from a feature phone, an app won’t be useful.
  • How do I want users to access my content? Connectivity matters. A mobile site requires users to have data access, while apps can allow the user to cache your content to consume at a later moment.
  • How quickly do I want to make changes to my content? Updates to mobile sites are instantaneous. Updating an app implies that the consumer also needs to download a new app version from the app store.
  • What development and budget constraints exist? Understanding your in-house capabilities and resources is crucial in making development choices. If there are no in-house capabilities, you'll need to consider development and upkeep costs. In addition, a mobile site only needs to be developed once, while apps need some maintenance.

With this in mind, remember that 37% of Irish consumers have downloaded five apps or more in the last year, and 70% of the last 5 apps downloaded, have been free.

Besides, having an app is not the same as having a mobile strategy. An app is essentially a bookmark for users who want to engage with you, but the majority of your traffic is likely to come from the web, not from brand-loyal power users who've downloaded your app.

Now you have the basics. It is your turn to think and decide which option is best for you, but the most important thing to bear in mind is that you need to have a strong mobile presence. Otherwise, you are losing sales as well as your reputation.