Mobile Users Prefer Responsive Web Design
While the majority of online purchases take place on a desktop, the actual research is conducted over mobile sites. Mobile optimized websites create a competitive advantage because the content adapts to the user’s screen size. Responsive web design reduces user scrolling and resizing of screen content. Pages load rapidly and are not hi-jacked by on-page advertising or forms. Mobile-optimized websites load in less than three seconds, which keeps users on your site. Page load time that takes three seconds or longer will likely send your prospect to a competitor because they want information, solutions, and response, right now. A strategy that includes Search Engine Optimization and mobile optimization can improve conversion rates because it delivers the right content to the right user, at the right time.
Mobile Traffic Increases Every Year
According to Pew Research, “nearly nine-in-ten Americans today are online, up from about half in the early 2000s.” Nearly 80% of Americans own a smartphone, and adoption among those in the 50+ age bracket has increased to 74%. The Pew study also reveals that seven out of ten people in America use social media. Tablet ownership has reached 51%, which is a 48% increase since 2010. KPCB US reports that mobile traffic in 2016 accounted for 51% of the time adults spend on mobile devices each day. Your customers are mobile, and so are your prospects, so it is critical that they have a positive user experience the first time they visit your website, regardless of the platform.
Mobile Optimized Sites are Less Expensive to Develop and Maintain
It is less expensive and less time intensive to develop a mobile optimized site in parallel with your website than to develop a mobile app. There is also less maintenance requirement, less testing, and support for a mobile optimized site. Standard testing methodologies ensure that content is delivered in the most optimal layout on all platforms. Managing website analytics is also much easier with a responsive site because the data can be consolidated into a single report. Your goal should be to provide a user experience that keeps a prospect on your page for a longer period of time. If users are redirected to a different site or a mobile app, they may lose interest and exit the website. Users need and expect a seamless experience regardless of the platform they use to browse your site, and they can be fickle so give them an optimal experience.
Website Analytics Reflect User Behavior
Insights into your website traffic will reflect how traffic found you, and the channel they used. You can create Google Analytics reports based on the data that is most important to your company. A few reporting options are listed below.
- Users by source/medium which is a list of websites by their domain and the number of times they have visited.
- Users by page report specific pages that your traffic has visited, as well as the number of visits.
- Users over time reveal the number of visitors by day. The number of visits will typically rise if you develop and share new content or begin advertising.
- Users by city is important if you have a small or medium-size business.
- Pageview by Landing Page reflects the number of visitors by the page they landed on.
- Sessions by social network reflects the social websites where your traffic originated and the number of sessions from each site. Knowing where your audience is, and how to increase brand awareness in each space is important for driving traffic to your site.
- Average time on page by landing page will reveal the average time your visitors spend on specific pages. If they spend very little time on a page, then review the value of the Main Content and Supplementary Content to determine areas of weakness or information that is does not reflect expertise, authority or trustworthiness. If you can improve the content and the user experience, they will spend more time on the page.
It is important to segment your analytics data to understand the differences between desktop and mobile traffic.
Mobile Traffic Leads to Conversions
A defined mobile strategy is critical in converting visitors because they can research your company from virtually anywhere on the planet. Many users will use their mobile devices to read and gather information, but the majority of conversions are still completed on desktop devices. Users should be able to locate information through a defined path that includes page names, headings, and links they can save and share for later consumption.
A 2013 report by Google into mobile insights revealed the following:
- Consumers spent 15+ hours each week for research
- Consumer research begins with a search engine, which means they don’t have a specific company in mind
- 69% of users prefer to shop within five miles of their home or work
- Immediacy is relevant because over half want to make a purchase within an hour
- 93% of users purchases are influenced by their mobile experience
Mobile Pathways Should Guide Users Toward Conversion
People use search engines as query pathways on the mobile devices to locate information. Pathways should be streamlined to create a conversion process that is easy to follow. User experience testing is critical to ensure that the user can easily move from the query process to product review, to the purchase process in the shortest number of steps possible. If one step causes a delay in the process, the purchase process may not complete. Web developers need to consider each step and don’t expect users to complete lengthy forms on a mobile device, so give them a different solution.
Marketing Strategies Must Include Mobile Optimization
The number of mobile users will continue to grow each year, so ensure that your website is optimized with responsive design to keep users attention when they arrive. Mobile optimization is easily done as part of website design and is less expensive and easier to maintain than a separate website. Knowing where your users are, and how to reach them with mobile should be part of your marketing strategy and sales conversion process.
Contact us if your website can benefit from responsive design.
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