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Marketing Tips and Insights

4 Reasons You Need a Mobile Website

Posted 1:09 PM by

Mobile Websites with Marketpath CMSA mobile website or mobile ready website is simply an internet site optimized for viewing on mobile devices or smartphones such as the iPhone, Android or Blackberry.  Because mobile gadgets are smaller than computers (with smaller screens), full websites are often difficult to view and navigate via mobile devices.  

Mobile websites provide a better way for consumers to learn about your organization when they’re on-the-go and typically consist of a “stripped down” version of a website, with less information, prioritized or more important to the mobile user.

Visit the Internet Marketing Dictionary for a detailed definition of a mobile website.

So why should your organization develop a mobile site? 

  1. Because your current site doesn’t work well or look correct on mobile devices

I mentioned this briefly above.  And while it may be obvious, it is also the most significant reason you should consider a mobile site.  Maybe the fonts are too small, or the images too large, or the navigation and layout are too complex or awkward.  Roll over menus that work and look great when viewing from a computer, might be tedious or impossible to use via mobile.  Or, possibly, the site downloads painfully slow on a mobile device.  Regardless of the reason, if your prospect or customer can’t easily use your site or find what they’re looking for (without getting frustrated), they may just try your competitor’s easier to use mobile site!

  1. The needs & behavior of a mobile web user are different from a traditional Internet user

While it is critical that your site be easy to view and navigate via mobile, it is also important to realize how mobile users are different from traditional computer web users.  Phone or mobile users are often away from their home or office (or at least away from their computers), with less time to spend surfing or looking for information.  Many times, they have a goal in mind and are looking for very specific information such as a location, news or event, contact, map, product, or schedule.  And often, they only have a few minutes to find what they want.

Because of these differences, your mobile design needs to focus on simplicity, presenting prioritized content that is relevant for the mobile user.  The Mobile Marketing Association suggests a less-is-more design philosophy for mobile web sites, focusing on the 3-5 most important reasons someone will visit your mobile site, and making those items visible upon entry, at the top menu level.  Eliminating side-scrolling and reducing down-scrolling also enhances ease-of-use via mobile.

  1. Mobile internet use is growing rapidly!Mobile Website Statistics

Whether you like it or not, more and more people will be accessing your website via mobile devices.  In fact, as of last month (July 2011), 50% of all connections to the internet are from phones and mobile devices

Microsoft Tag recently developed the infographic to the right to summarize the explosion of the mobile web, which is already a large market, but growing more rapidly by the minute.  If you are still skeptical as to the importance of the mobile web, I’ve included a number of interesting statistics.

  • 70% of the world’s population now have a mobile phone; 87% in the U.S. (per Experian)
  • U.S. children are now more likely to own a mobile phone than a book, with 85% of kids owning a phone as to 73% having books! (National Literacy Trust)
  • 55% of US consumers who purchased a new phone in 2011 bought a smartphone, up from the 34% last year (Nielsen)
  • 38% of US consumers owned a smartphone as of May 2011
  • Daily internet usage via handheld devices jumped from 29% in 2009 to 43% in 2010
  • In the last year Google has seen a 400% increase in the number of mobile searches
  • The #1 access method for local information is now the mobile browser

Despite the growing importance of mobile, less than 5% of businesses have mobile enabled websites today.  In fact, 50% of small businesses have never even checked the appearance or functionality of their site on a Smart Phone!

  1. It’s fairly easy to create a mobile website

Assuming the functionality and content from your current site are up to snuff (you know what they say about ASS-U-ME), creating a mobile website is reasonably easy.  This is especially true with tools like Marketpath CMS, or other web content management solutions, that allow you to leverage both your existing website content and content management processes, without having to start from scratch or add new processes to update your mobile site.

Marketpath allows you to easily manage your mobile websites within Marketpath CMS, updating content for both your regular and mobile sites at the same time, while delivering to traditional and mobile formats.

So why not give mobile users what they want and enhance your brand equity and reputation at the same time?

Comments (5)
AndyK wrote
I've found a really useful tool to show how your website looks on a mobile here on this neat little checker:
Posted Aug 19 2011 2:03 PM
Kevin Kennedy wrote
Thanks Andy. That is pretty useful. However, I tried with a few sites I know have mobile versions, and it showed the mobile site, yet still said they did not have mobile versions. It was still useful, as it showed both the regular and mobile sites, but wasn't working perfectly.
Posted Aug 19 2011 10:04 PM
Tony Marshall wrote
Hi Kevin & Andy, Nice article and thanks for sharing our website checker tool. We built it because I couldn't find one online that worked well. I built it as an aid for our sales team when they are talking to potential clients. But as it's working in the cloud and has loads of spare processing power we thought we'd let others know about it. I think the market is only just beginning to become aware of the numbers of people browsing with smartphones, but there is still the need to inform website owners. I'd say the last two years have been all about "apps" but I think the next two will be all about web. You are correct our little tool is quite easily fooled and can type the wrong message! But the image is always (nearly always!!) correct. The check is quite simple - we request the home page of the target site with a "normal" user agent and then as a smartphone and measure 1. are the paths different and 2. are the page sizes different. If the site uses javascript our crawler gets it wrong because it gets the same page for each request. But our image grabber (the third part of the process) is different and he gets it right! Maybe I should try to build in a check using information relating to the image..... At the least I need to change the words and not be so confident in our message as the :-)) Phew - I didn't intend to write so much, but thanks again for using the script. Tony
Posted Aug 20 2011 10:20 AM
Kevin Kennedy wrote
Tony, Thanks for the information and use of your tool. Regardless of what the message says in the tool, I still found it very useful. The visuals are certainly the most valuable aspect of the tool anyway. Much appreciated for your explanation.
Posted Aug 20 2011 11:11 AM
Bloomtools wrote
The reasons you have put up is really nice. Good information to understand how one needs a mobile website.
Posted Mar 2 2012 11:10 AM
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