Google’s ‘mobile-friendly’ algorithm update is looming it’s no surprise webmasters are scrambling to get optimised before the April 21st deadline. The search engine is determined to create a more mobile web for its users, while the majority of big brands have already made the shift to appease their mobile audience.
However, a study last year revealed only 6% of SMEs have a mobile friendly website, leaving them vulnerable Google’s approaching update. The saddest thing about this stat is it takes the threat of a search penalty for many business owners to take mobile seriously – but there are a bunch of reasons you should have gone mobile years ago.
#1: The Majority Of Your Audience Is Mobile
Mobile devices are the most common way to access the web around the world and this shift has been happening since the first iPhone and iPad releases. User habits vary across different devices (desktop and tablets still bag the most conversions, for example) but smartphones are the go-to gadget for instant web access. Which means this is where the majority of customer journeys start – or never happen at all, if you’re not mobile friendly.
#2: User Experience Is A Deal Breaker
Pretty much all the metrics that count for any website (conversions, bounce rate, etc.) trace back to user experience; which is why mobile optimisation has been a key player in SEO for years – even without an algorithm update. Ask a visitor to pinch and zoom to read your content or hit the right links and 61% will head straight back to the results page – a list full of your closest competitors.
#3: Mobile Users Are More Impatient Than You Could Imagine
Mobile internet users are people on the go who demand instant access to everything. These guys don’t hang around for a laptop to fire up, making them the most impatient of internet users around. In fact, 40% of mobile shoppers ditch a site if it takes more than three seconds to load.
#4: You Have Mobile Friendly Competition
Fail to deliver a user experience that keeps people involved with your brand and you can guarantee there’s a competitor out there ready to snap up your lost business. A massive 67% of users say they are more likely to buy from a mobile friendly site and almost all of them (61%) say they would leave sites that don’t offer a good mobile experience.
#5: 44% Never Return To Sites That Aren’t Mobile Friendly
It gets worse too, because almost half of people who use smartphones to comparison shop never return to a website that isn’t optimised for mobile. Now this is just smartphone users, so you can forget about tablets and the latest releases of wearable technology. You get just one chance to grab the attention of smartphone users and failure means you’ll never see 44% of them again.
Don’t Let Google Dictate Your Mobile Optimisation
While we don’t want to underestimate the impact Google’s ‘mobile-friendly’ algorithm will have (it will be huge), there’s one thing more important than any search engine to your brand. We’re talking about users, potential customers and return clients – the people who actually invest in your products and services.
The truth is, if you haven’t already gone mobile, then you have some making up to do with these people (the ones that will come back at least). And, while it’s not too late to create a better experience for new and returning visitors, you want to do mobile optimisation the right way (for users, not just search engines).
Stay Tuned For More On Mobile Optimisation
It’s all good and well us talking about going mobile the right way, but it’s not much help to you if we don’t explain what makes good mobile optimisation. So we’ll be back soon with a closer look at how to optimise a website that keeps users and search engines in love with your online brand.