5 reasons to go mobile in 2014
Just about every year since 2007 has been declared The Year Of Mobile. 2014 is no different. In 2013, social media really saw small businesses come into their own as they mastered online engagement and became more aware of brand reputation.
Now, the focus has shifted to mobile, as increasing numbers of UK users now access the internet from their smartphone. SMEs need to prepare for a new kind of engagement as their audience’s habits and patterns adapt to this newer medium.
If your business has spent 2013 ignoring the mobile trend, it’s time you learned the truth: it’s not going to go away any time soon. Read our 5 reasons that you need to go mobile in 2014.
1 Everyone else is
If everyone else jumped off a cliff would you do it too?
Obviously! If it meant staying ahead of the game and landing more customers with increased exposure, newer technology and better publicity.
If your audience is searching for your product or service via a mobile device but can only access your competitors’ sites, this is a big problem for your business. It won’t go away unless you become more accessible to more users by optimising your site for mobile sooner rather than later.
2 The way we consume content is changing
A recent survey by Google demonstrates that 72% of consumers want mobile-friendly sites as more and more of us expect to be able to access information from anywhere within seconds. Just over half (51%) of UK mobile users have a smartphone, and this figure is expected to increase to 75% by 2016.
Like it or not, online usage from mobile is increasing as people search for information, interesting facts, funny videos, nearby services and restaurants from their smartphone. Ask yourself what your target audience expect from your site. What percentage of your site traffic has found you from a mobile device?
Despite the high percentage of users demanding more from brands, 49% of ecommerce sites are not optimised for mobile. This could explain why smartphone users have been found to convert at only one third of the rate of desktop and tablet users. By ignoring the needs of mobile consumers, you are effectively saying “No thank you!” to their business.
3 It is good for SEO
Rather, having a site that is not optimised for mobile is bad for SEO. If your site takes half an hour to load from a mobile device or is impossible to properly engage with and consume from your users’ perspective (perhaps the text is too small or the drop down menus aren’t clickable), Google will punish you by shrinking your rankings.
This is an extension of Google’s mandate of “quality first.” If your site fails to engage visitors, this will be detrimental to your mobile SEO, which has negative implications for your business.
4 The rise of mobile-only users
Mobile-only is a thing. There are people out there who use mobile exclusively for certain online activities, such as social networking, search or music. Forrester research from April 2013, for example, suggests that nearly 25% of people identify as mobile-exclusive when it comes to social media.
Of course, other sources suggest that mobile technologies are a long way away from taking over desktop PCs and laptops. While smartphone users are the least likely to convert as a whole, you can’t ignore the untapped value of this growing market for your business.
5 “Going mobile” isn’t just website optimisation
Your customers and potential customers are glued to their mobile devices, day in, day out. They use them to access search engines, social media channels, professional and personal email accounts, as well as traditional SMS and MMS.
Consider the benefits of a text message or email marketing campaign for your business. By giving your audience the chance to opt in and out of these services, you win their permission to send them information about your company, your latest offers, services and helpful or interesting insights.
Going mobile creates a more involved and almost intimate experience with your audience. Optimising your site for mobile gives your users the option to visit you wherever they are, while sending SMS updates keeps people engaged with your brand.
You can also employ mobile as a means of enhancing your product. For example, with alldayPA’s call answering service, you can access your dashboard from your mobile (or any device with a web connection) to update your status. We also send you your latest messages via text so that you can decide whether you need to address your callers immediately or if they can wait until later.
How do you plan to incorporate mobile to your 2014 business strategy?
Or, if you haven’t already thought about it, how would you use these ideas in your ideal world? Going mobile doesn’t have to be difficult. Over the next week, we’ll be posting more in depth about how you can “go mobile” in a way that suits your business.