It’s time to mobilise your business

Published: Tuesday, April 19th, 2016

Responsive web design is all about the mobile generation. The widespread use of smartphones and tablets is making mobile web design a necessity and here’s why. Globally we know that in 2014 mobile users overtook desktop users for the first time in terms of internet usage. But closer to home did you know that Irish consumers are the highest users of mobile devices in the west? This presents a direct challenge to businesses and requires them to look again at both web site design and their digital marketing strategy.

A report by Adrian Weckler in the Irish Independent informed us that Irish people are now ‘the biggest phone internet users in the western world.’ Backed by research from Statcounter, large screen mobile phone devices were cited as a reason for this shift in behaviour. In an article by Krishna De research revealed that more than a third of Irish people are spending 20 hours or more online per week. Social media research from Ipsos MRBI shows that 74% of Facebook users access the website daily, with 48% using Instagram, 35% on Twitter and 18% on Linkedin every day. Many of them access these websites via mobile phone apps. So when you post an article or publish an ad on social channels with the specific purpose of redirecting people to your website, chances are people are using their mobile devices to click on your ad or post.

If your website is not mobile friendly then your web page will not display correctly on their mobile devices. This results in a poor mobile user experience and worse, can often result in losing a sale. With these trends in mind and the fact that mobile users have their devices with them virtually 24 hours a day 7 days a week – at work, at home, when travelling – you can see the necessity of having a mobile-friendly website. Yet surprisingly, Digitaledge research revealed that an incredible 57% of businesses were still not mobile-friendly!

Responsive Web Design

Responsive web design or mobile web design means making your website pages adjustable to all devices from desktops and laptops to smartphones and tablets. In other words it’s about giving your customers a great browsing experience regardless of what device they use to find you. For example, having navigation and call-to-action buttons that display clearly and are easily accessible with just one click of the thumb while holding your smartphone.

Responsive Web Design Galway

Compare the two displays above and consider which one you would prefer to see on your mobile phone. The first image is mobile-friendly with call-to-action buttons clearly displayed and easily accessed when holding the device in one hand. This makes the searcher’s mobile experience a lot easier as the buttons can be reached with just one click of your thumb. In the second image the site has not been optimized for mobile search which gives an instant negative perception of your website. The content appears smaller making the page difficult to navigate and the crucial call-to-action button is difficult for users to click on. The risk of a non-mobile site is that it results in such a poor user experience that it will turn visitors off and potentially harm your sales.

Search Engine Requirements

It’s also worth bearing in mind that since April 2015 the search engine behemoth Google began rewarding mobile friendly websites by ranking them higher in mobile search results above non-mobile sites. However, it’s not just a question of satisfying Google’s technical requirements. It’s ultimately about satisfying the people likely to buy your products. By developing a mobile website you are killing two birds with one stone i.e. satisfying both Google and your customers. That’s a win-win!

With over a third of internet users now accessing the net from a mobile device, clearly business owners need to make responsive or adaptive web design a priority for their digital marketing strategy. Ignoring this market ultimately means that your mobile-friendly competitors will get their business instead of you. How many times do you think a consumer will return to your website using their mobile device if it does not display properly?

But getting your business optimized for the mobile generation does not have to be a difficult transition. With the right web development team supporting you the process can be completed relatively quickly and at a reasonable cost. However the benefits to your business in terms of enquiries and sales will surprise you.

If your site is not currently mobile then we would like to hear from you. Come and talk to Digitaledge, the experts in web design in Galway. We are based in the Galway Techology Centre and we’ll be happy to discuss your web development needs with you.

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