Is it Time To Make the Move to a Mobile-Friendly Website?

In 2009, a record number 173.8 million smartphones were sold globally. The need for instant gratification and to  feel constantly connected has caused many people to make the switch to smartphones. So what does all of this mean for you? Well, it means it may be time to consider tapping into this growing market by making your website mobile-friendly.

Things to Think About…

  • What some people don’t realize is that there is a separate mobile search index for mobile sites. When someone uses their smartphone to make a search, their query is processed through a separate index specifically for mobile devices. Since mobile searches are fairly new, there is less competition, which can offer you the chance to have your mobile-friendly website rank higher than it would on traditional search engines. As the mobile Web continues to grow, you will have already established a place in search engine rankings, keeping you in a top spot despite the growing competition around you.
  • While traditional websites can be accessed through a mobile device, they tend to slow things down. In a world of instant gratification, smartphone users don’t like this, and are more likely to avoid these sites. If you have a target demographic that could include people accessing your site from a mobile device, it is in your best interest to make the experience as simple as you can for them. Don’t let them get distracted by slow loading times and complicated usability.
  • A mobile-friendly website offers you the opportunity to tap into a niche market of people. There are people that are constantly accessing content through their Blackberry’s, iPhones, and PDA’s. These types of people are usually on the go, and using a mobile device is much more practical for them than using a laptop or computer. These people tend to be in positions of power, making them a key demographic for you to target with your mobile advertisements.
  • Since mobile phones make it easier to download videos, access apps and use the mobile Web, many people rely heavily on these types of searches over traditional ones. This switch shows no signs of slowing down, and can offer you the chance to gain website traffic in a way you’ve never imagined. It has been proven that people using smartphones are more likely to click on advertisements than people using the Internet. That means your ad could have much more potential through a mobile index than through traditional search engine marketing.

Still not convinced? It is being predicted that over the next several years, almost every person with a mobile phone will own one that can access the Internet. It would benefit you to be ahead of the competition and start making a name for yourself through the mobile Web now, instead of when the competition will be much fiercer.

*Photo courtesy of Johan Larsson through Flickr

About Fathom Team Member

No Comments

  • Arthur Kay says:

    The article you linked (first bullet point) is from 2005 and clearly outdated. A “mobile” website is different from a “mobile-friendly” website, but most mobile devices can display more than basic HTML or plain text.

    Current mobile devices are already supporting the same technical code “regular” websites use (e.g. Flash, JavaScript) – so there’s little incentive to build a second “mobile” website specifically for mobile users.

    If mobile devices are teaching the web development industry anything, it’s that websites should focus on UX (user experience). Websites should deliver relevant content and not force the user to search/scroll to find it. In that respect, I would agree that every website should be mobile-friendly.

    As the Internet and Telecommunications industries move forward, bandwidth and speed will be a non-issues. However, the increasing use of mobile devices DOES mean that web developers should optimize their code (for speed). It’s just good programming.

    Although I can’t argue the point about mobile search indexes (because I don’t know enough about it), I have to wonder if the search engines will continue to have a separate index much longer when mobile devices like the iPhone or Android can display the same websites as desktop computers.

  • Leon Yeh says:

    Thanks for sharing your thought. I agreed that seperate mobile site will help your customer to find your better. Now I learned that it is actually good for your ranking in Google mobile search. Double benefits.

    This is great news! Mobile website is more than just copy of your regular website. Usually mobile website is a condense version of your desktop website.

    I usually surf the site using my laptop, but when I am not in my office, my iphone is my next best. I use it to search for address, owner names ( in the party and forgot the name). That is why I think mobile website is a complement to your existing site.

Leave a Reply