Seeing Further News for January 2018:

Mobile Websites – The Big Picture Regarding Small Screens

Pop Quiz Question: What’s the biggest change to the internet in the last 10 years? If you just pulled out your iPhone to Google the answer or ask Siri, then you’ve already revealed it before you start: it’s how the internet has adapted to the explosion of mobile devices.

Exactly 11 years ago this month Steve Jobs held up the first iPhone prototype in front of a rapt audience and promised a revolution. But even he couldn’t see how completely each new generation of faster, sharper, better mobile phones would remake our online experience.

Next Question: What percentage of your customers are looking at your website through a small phone screen? If you don’t know, you certainly need to find out quickly, and the number may surprise you. Because 2017 was the year that MOBILE USERS OUTNUMBERED “regular” computer users.

Think about that.

Half your visitors are seeing your carefully-crafted business website through the tiny window of a handheld screen. Maybe not half – maybe more. Some of our clients are made of 2/3 mobile visitors. Others have only 25% or 33% visitors viewing via cellphones. But even those – that’s one out of every three visitors. Can anyone afford to deliver one out of every three customers a less-than-excellent online experience?

Final Question: So how is YOUR mobile site experience? When was the last time you pretended to be your own customer and looked at the website on a phone with fresh eyes?
When you take seriously the big picture of the mobile internet you sometime end up with two websites: one for the phones and one for the “rest of us.” A web presence that responds meaningfully to an ever-growing number of handheld users is going to end up different from a desktop-centric website, in three ways:

  • It has to look different. It’s a small vertical screen, not a big wide screen. The way the pictures and text are positioned on a 27″ iMac, for example, just won’t work on an 5″ iPhone.
  • It actually has to work different. There’s no mouse moving around. Mobile internet speeds are slower, so complex designs and lovely slide shows may take more time and data than visitors are willing to put up with.
  • It needs different content, or at least different organization of your content. If you whip out your phone and search for a restaurant, you’re probably wanting to know where it is, what it serves, and maybe how you call for a reservation. Mobile users don’t click around as much as desktop users, so if the right data isn’t easily available, potential customers may be disappointed.

So not just how it looks, but how it works. And not just how it works, but what people use. At Odyssey we think about these things all the time, and can find you the best balance for your buck in both mobile and desktop online presence.

Plus, we can tell you just how and what your mobile users are doing, should you want to know. (And don’t you?) Ask us anything about the state of Mobile websites and let us improve your standing.

Here’s a bonus question: What’s the NEXT most important Internet change in the last decade? If you responded “Facebook” or “Social Media”, well — we have another article coming for you.