The Importance of Being Responsive
Anyone not living under a rock knows websites need to be responsive. In fact, Google announced in April 2015 that it would release a new mobile-friendly algorithm designed to give a boost to mobile-friendly pages in Google’s search results. Not sure if your website is mobile friendly in Google’s eyes? Here’s a link that will take you directly to the Google mobile website friendly test. www.goo.gl/ExK3WC. Please note, it’s case sensitive.
A question we’ve been answering more and more frequently is, “I know my site needs to be responding to the type of device the user is on, but why is it important, and what exactly are the best practices?”
Well, as luck would have it, we happen to design lots of websites, so we might know a thing or two about UX design with data to back it. “UX” stands for user experience, but more importantly, it means creating user satisfaction and ease of use. In other words, how easy and simple was it for someone to understand your company’s USP (unique selling proposition), and how easy was it for them to figure out what the call to action was? As challenging as accomplishing this simplicity on a computer or tablet screen may be, how is this best done on a mobile device screen?
Within the past year alone we’ve seen a great increase in the number of mobile phone users coming into our clients’ websites (your fellow security companies nationwide). Any site that we have created automatically gets Google Analytics installed prior to launching. Every first of the month we’ll review the analytics across every site that has been developed by our company; within this past year we’ve seen an average increase of about 15 to 25 percent from mobile phone users. No problem, you say — your website is mobile responsive. Well then, you have everything covered, right? Not necessarily.
It’s been proved that Web users have short attention spans, so your mobile site better be geared toward what makes your company different, what you’re offering and how to get it quickly.
If your website simply condenses itself into a single column scroll, then you’ve got some work to do.
Below is a simple checklist that will help you improve your UX to gain leads through your website from mobile users.
• The first is an obvious: Don’t use Flash Player. Besides the fact that Flash is terribly outdated, mobile phone users can’t see it — so why use it?
• Make sure you’re showing only visuals that are relevant to the product/service and nothing more. Get rid of your rotating banners with text and replace it with a single, non-rotating image of your offering. Most of the time the user can’t see the banner clearly, and certainly not the tiny text that just shrank from the desktop version down to your mobile version.
• Next, limit the amount of text on your site. There is such a thing as too much scrolling. Stick to a paragraph, a few bullets and your call to action. In marketing we like to call it the K.I.S.S. rule: Keep It Simple, Stupid! If it’s too much, more than likely the mobile phone user will just go to your competitor’s site.
• Also, make sure your menu or site’s navigation turns into a mobile phone menu. You’ve seen them before: the little square typically in the top right corner that expands after you select it. If it’s just a normal horizontally positioned menu, chances are it’s too small and hard to select. A mobile site should never require the user to expand or zoom in to see your offerings.
• Most importantly, make sure your phone number is located on the top and bottom of your mobile phone website. And definitely don’t make your phone number a graphic. Make sure it’s in simple HTML format so the mobile phone user can simply click on your phone number to dial.
There are many best practices when it comes to perfecting the UX on your mobile phone website, and some should be split A/B tested to see which performs better than others. These are the more typical items we look at initially based on our clients nationwide. Until next month, adios, muchachos.