Are you optimizing your website for mobile users or still just thinking about desktop users? If you are not thinking about mobile users as a top priority, then you are most likely going to lose visitors over the next few years. In 2014, the digital world turned upside down as mobile users surpassed desktop users in digital consumption as announced in TechCrunch. This number is only going to increase as the future progresses, meaning that you need to ensure that mobile users can interface with your site easily. While some industries are way ahead of this behavioral curve, the rest will catch up. It is just a matter of time.
High Mobile Use Industries
Some industries are already getting a high quantity of mobile visitors to their websites. The restaurant industry is one of them. Many restaurant clients choose the restaurant they want to eat at from their mobile device. This behavior makes sense, since these decisions are often made on the road. Think about your own behavior. When you are driving around doing errands and are ready to stop for a bite to eat, do you pull out your phone to see what is nearby? Do you pull up your Yelp app for reviews? Other industries that are similar to this one include retail stores, entertainment venues (like movie theaters), and travel. All of these industries are primarily B2C, although there is some crossover into corporate customers. However, they sell directly to the end customer in most cases.
The B2B industries are not far behind as companies are finding ways to connect to their customers through mobile apps. Especially with tablet users, B2B companies are finding that it is important to optimize their websites for mobile. With these trends in mind, how can you make sure that your website is optimized for mobile devices?
Mobile Responsive Sites
The best solution for mobile-readiness is to put in place a mobile responsive website. Mobile responsive sites rearrange their elements for each device screen size. The lead content gets priority, and then the rest follows with sidebar elements and comments coming at the bottom. With a mobile responsive site, the pages open up at the right size on each device immediately without any need for user interaction.
Other Optimization Considerations
Besides a mobile responsive site, there are other ways you can make your site mobile-friendly. Like desktops, mobile devices load large images slower, especially if they have a less-than-ideal connection. Therefore, keeping your images smaller, employing speed enhancing techniques on your site and eliminating any extraneous coding will help your site speed. Using Google Webmaster Tools, you can make sure that the search engine recognizes your site as mobile-friendly, because that designation will affect how it shows up in mobile search.
Other tweaks include knowing what content will show up, when the pages reconfigure, putting your best effort on those content blocks, and taking a look at how your site appears on different-sized devices. Also, make sure you measure website performance using analytics to see how it performs on mobile.
Paula A is the mom of a college graduate and a freshman in college, and covering up the gray with lots of colorful highlights.