Designing a Site for Mobile

Image Credit: freedigitalphotos

More people are using mobile in all online areas, and conversions are happening more with mobile than on desktops. This means that business owners need to take mobile engagement seriously and make sure that they design a site that’s easily used on mobile devices. Failure to do so may mean losing out to the competition when it comes to attracting new customers and retaining existing ones.

Elements of Mobile Design

A useful mobile site displays the information the user wants to see. This includes:

· Business location – A full address can integrate with mobile mapping systems.

· Email and phone – Linked email address and phone allow consumers to contact you from their mobile devices.

· Mobile-optimized site – A user can quickly scan your site without having to pinch and zoom, and can determine your relevance.

· Mobile e-commerce – A mobile shopping cart allows customers to purchase things on-the-go whereas a traditional shopping cart can be difficult for mobile users to interact with on tiny screens.

· Intuitive search and view – Mobile users require an easy to locate search function and quality resolution images so they can view products on your webpage

If you have these elements in place, it’s easy for a mobile visitor to interact with your site. If you do not, there’s a greater likelihood that the user will go to a competitor than make a point later on to view your site from a desktop PC. Along with the elements above, a good mobile site presents information to users in a streamlined manner and tries to eliminate unnecessary clicks. Flash and Java do not work well on mobile browsers, so avoid these tools when planning your design. Finally, take steps to cut down on the amount of free text a mobile user has to enter. It’s challenging for users to type accurately from phones, and hard to correct mistakes. FedEx does a nice job of using menus as workarounds for user-input text fields.

Ways to go Mobile

You’ve got several options when creating a mobile-friendly web design. There are free and low-cost templates and themes that render a mobile version of your site. These offer a good baseline strategy for displaying basic information. However, you’ll maintain site branding and control by choosing a website that works with responsive design and uses CSS to identify screen size and resize your website to the screen accessing your web content.

This may seem like a lot of work, but its work you must undertake to maintain relevancy to the widest possible audience. An Econsultancy study found that gift businesses with a fully mobile site realized over 5 percent conversion rate, whereas non-optimized websites experienced only a 1 percent conversion rate with many users dropping off along the shopping experience. With travel, mobilized sites experienced a nearly 6 percent conversion rate whereas non-mobile sites had a less than 1 percent conversion rate.

With 100,000 page visitors, a mobile site will experience 500 more sales than a non-mobile site, and this number will rise as mobile browsing rates rise. Already, mobile traffic has risen from 2 percent to 19 percent of all website traffic. The numbers tell the story of future website traffic and sales, so it’s time to listen and keep mobile users in mind with your web design.