Mobile Changes Everything
Posted 12 July 2013
The mobile internet revolution is having a dramatic impact upon the web design industry…
Peter Kriss’ article for the Harvard Business Review describes the changes that occurred when a hotel chain rolled out a mobile-friendly feedback form for guests. The chain had previously done this exclusively through PC-compatible forms which were emailed to customers after their stay at a hotel.
Unsurprisingly, the number of people leaving feedback on their stay significantly increased. However, the hotel chain were surprised to discover that the average customer rating noticeably dropped.
The percentage of UK smartphone users is expected to pass 50% in 2013 and hit 75% within 3 years. For many people using their smartphone is now easiest way to browse the internet.
The web design industry has responded to this change by introducing mobile sites, mobile-first design and responsive web design solutions. These allow companies to connect more effectively with mobile users. However, the hotel chain’s experience shows us that this in itself is only the first half of the solution.
Introducing mobile-friendly web design enables more people to connect with your website. Those who would have previously visited your website on a mobile device but left because it was unfriendly for mobile viewing will now spend more time browsing your site. However, it is important to realise this in itself doesn’t mean that your conversion rate will increase. It simply means that the web design is more accessible to more people.
The real issue lies in the relationship between the quality of the web design (in this case, accessibility and functionality) and the influence that your content yields on the site visitor. If your site has weak content, a mobile website isn’t going to change this. However, if you’re able to introduce a highly effective mobile-friendly web design and harness this with exceptional content site visitors are more likely to respond positively to your business.
Kriss explained it in this way:
Mobile, especially an experience designed for it, makes it easier for people to do things they might not have done otherwise: offer feedback, make a purchase, check sports scores. But you’re not just getting more of the same customers you already had — you’re adding new ones who represent not just a demographic shift, but have fundamentally different engagement levels.
This is such a helpful insight. When you develop a mobile-friendly website design you are going to begin connecting with people that you would not have previously. This places huge value on the quality of experience that your web design provides. If it’s not easy to find out the information that the visitor needs and respond quickly and easily then you may be missing out on an opportunity.
Kriss’ analysis also affirms that if you’re the first business in your sector or region to engage with mobile users then you will have an immediate headstart. An innovative mobile-friendly web design may well enable you to attract customers from your competitors and help you grow your client base.
Contact us today to find out more about professional mobile-friendly website design.