Mobile devices, particularly smartphones, have revolutionized our day to day activities and risen to prominence faster than any other form of media that has come before it. How fast exactly? Consider this: there are more mobile devices purchased every day than there are babies being born in the world by a wide margin. Mobile usage is quickly making desktop computer dominance a thing of the past. It’s estimated that mobile device usage will surpass desktop usage by 2015. So what can brands do to prepare for the rapidly expanding mobile takeover?
Recognize that mobile is not just another distribution channel, but the most important one. We have to shed paradigms of the “home PC” past and move towards a content and mobile first strategy. With mobile searches increasing 500% since 2010, Google has recognized the importance of mobile searches, and now tests all of their sites and tools on mobile devices first. Good mobile accessibility creates more opportunities and a better overall experience with your brand, because current and potential customers are able to interact with your message in more places at more times.
A better mobile experience will help increase mobile traffic. With 10% of all page views coming from a mobile device, it’s increasingly more important that your mobile site works properly. It reflects poorly on your brand overall if users cannot access features of your site.
A few key takeaways for a better mobile site experience:
- Keep it simple and easy to navigate
- Make a clear path to key features
- Make buttons touch friendly
- Text should be legible without zooming
- Minimize page loading times
Remember, your mobile site should not just be your desktop site shrunk down to fit a smaller screen.
You don’t always need an app for that. Most people use less than 6 native apps per day. Even a popular site like Facebook, who has a native app on multiple mobile platforms, reported that 50% of their mobile users access the mobile web version of their site. Mobile web allows for instantaneous updates, zero content restrictions, and is device agnostic. Native apps can be costly to build, must be rebuilt multiple times to accommodate for multiple platforms, and are limited to their respective app store’s terms and conditions. Native apps may not be the right fit for every brand, but it will always make sense to have a mobile-friendly website.
As more and more brands embrace mobile usage, the way brands and consumers use mobile will continually change and evolve. What are some brands that have great mobile experiences and what makes them great? Let us know in the comments below!