Imagine you’re using your phone to conduct a search on a specific company. The first thing you notice is the small text that is almost impossible to read or click on. Then, when you finally navigate to the desired page, the video won’t load! Unfortunately, the site wasn’t optimized for mobile, and you’re left extremely frustrated.
Smart phones and tablets have replaced online/PCs for many uses and applications. Mobile sites aren’t a novel luxury for your business anymore, but virtually a necessity. Only having a desktop version of your website won’t cut it anymore—and can even give your brand a negative reputation.
Certain functions that work well on the desktop version may not work at all on a mobile device. Navigation needs to be designed for mobile devices, which are typically on much smaller screens.
According to findings in the 2013 Mobile Path-to-Purchase study by Telmetrics and xAd, 57% of mobile users go directly to the brand’s app or website when starting the search process. Furthermore, 50% of respondents use their mobile devices to start a search process, and 46% use mobile exclusively when performing research online. Your business’s website needs to be compatible for mobile uses, or it might be useless for the large percentage of people who use their phones or tablets to search.
For more results from the Mobile Path-to-Purchase study, check out this infographic.
How It Affects the Brand
What happens when a business doesn’t have a mobile site, or the mobile site doesn’t work properly? According to a study posted on Google Think Insights, it’s not uncommon for it to negatively impact the brand.
Nearly 75% of users prefer mobile-friendly sites, but 96% of consumers have encountered sites that were not designed for mobile devices.
A negative reaction to a mobile site can become a negative reaction to the brand. In the study, 52% of users said that a bad mobile experience made them less likely to engage with a company. Forty-eight percent said that if a site didn’t work well on their mobile device, it made them feel like the company didn’t care.
Even worse, a business’s lack of a mobile site can help competitors. Users will continue to look for a mobile-friendly site until they find one that works. If your site isn’t up to par, a competitor with a working mobile site will benefit.
An effective mobile site is a key component of a strategic internet marketing plan. With mobile sites becoming more affordable, it would be a mistake to forget the large number of those who uses their mobile devices to search.