When you engage a professional web designer to create your personal, corporate or small business website, one of the first questions you are likely to get asked is: Do you need the site to be mobile-enabled? The correct response, in all likelihood, should be a resounding “Yes!”
Let’s explore why.
A Mobile World
It used to be that entrepreneurs, business owners and company executives had offices where they conducted most of their business; and going “out of office” meant stepping out for a quick lunch break, or for a couple of hours to meet with a client. Today however, all that has changed, and your website design must reflect that seismic shift.
Chances are that, if you want to reach a busy customer or potential client today, he or she will be “on the go”. That does not mean they are out of reach. On the contrary, even when out of the office, most business owners are on their smart phone for extended periods – often 5 to 6 hours of the business day. For them, it is essential that they be in touch with their current clients, business partners and future clients.
The question is: Is your website smart enough to be there for them if they need your products or services, or information on them, while “on the go”?
Speed And Agility Matters
Any web development company can put up a mobile-enabled website for you in no time. The question is: How agile and convenient is it to use “on the go”?
• If one of your clients (or prospects) is trying to look you up quickly, while on the road (at a traffic stop, in the train, while commuting, or while dashing in and out of meetings), does your website allow him/her to quickly find you?
• If your website is locatable, can they easily get to the information they need, about you or your products and services?
• Is your website design optimised with the right information for busy sales prospects that are viewing your web pages on a 4 inch screen and later on a huge Mac computer monitor?
These are the considerations that need to be kept in mind if you wish to have a website that supports your sales work with your target audience. In a busy world of texting and instant messaging, the speed, agility and usability of your website really matters.
If you fail to answer “Yes” to any of the above questions, then it’s time for you to seriously consider updating your site to reflect what your audience wants and expects. You definitely need a mobile website - failure to do so is inviting your competitors to move in and grab your market share and your customers!
The 8-Second Challenge
So what should you do in order to ensure you have an effective mobile web presence?
Firstly, your web designer should consider the realities of our new mobile world. Research shows that most individuals that use mobile devices have limited attention spans – down from 12 seconds in 2000, to around 8 seconds today. And that means you have a very limited window to grab your viewers interest – or the competition will!
Here’s what you can do to make sure you stay ahead of the game:
• Make sure the layout of your mobile website isn’t leading to unnecessary confusion – simple and clean is what you want! Remember, it's 8 seconds of attention span.
• Consider whether you need separate pages, or different content for mobile websites. Mobile websites should be “lighter” (devoid of heavy graphics or video content) so they are quicker to load and easier to navigate.
• Do some field testing of your website and its content. Go on a road trip with friends, and get them to search for, access and navigate through your website. Ask them to be brutally honest and tell you what they found. You need the truth for the test to be useful.
• Did they reach the content they wanted in record time? Did they find what they were looking for without any problems? Were they looking for something else – which they could not find? Did they enjoy the experience of surfing through your site? What devices and screen sizes did they use?
If your “test subjects” were able to get everything they needed from your mobile website; and if you were able to keep them engaged within the crucial 8-second window, then you may be well positioned to survive and thrive in the new paradigm known as the 'mobile revolution'.
If, however, you are not satisfied with what you see, then it’s time for you to consult with a professional web development company like MYIT and get the help you need to really 'go mobile'!