Smartphones quickly went from expensive and exciting new technology to a regular part of everyday life. Today we find it strange for anyone to leave the house without their phone. From hospital waiting rooms to theater lobbies (back when they were open anyways), people staring at their phones is a normal sight, and mobile internet usage is ubiquitous.

by Liz Rustia

Mobile Internet Usage

For website owners, that means it’s past time for your website to provide a good mobile experience.

In 2016, for the first time, mobile internet usage surpassed computer usage. And the trend has only increased in the years since. Over half of all website traffic worldwide now happens on smartphones.

You’ve heard it before by now, but we’re saying it again: your website needs to be mobile friendly. 

Here are three, cast-iron reasons to go responsive.

Mobile users buy more

Mobile is convenient. There’s little load time, no waiting around for devices to start up, and, as the name suggests, it’s mobile. Mobile-friendly sites can be accessed from pretty much anywhere which helps with impulse buys. People aren’t hanging on to the idea of purchasing when they get home on their PC – they want to do it now! Accessible websites enhance the customer experience. The better the experience, the more likely they are to purchase – and the stats back that up.

On average, 15% of desktop users make purchases at least once a week, whereas 35% of mobile users make purchases at least once a week. If they hit a website that is hard to navigate on mobile or doesn’t feel intuitive, they’ll take their business elsewhere – and with the power of mobile they’ll be making that purchase with your competitor in about 30 seconds.

It’s cost effective

Responsive website design ensures that webpages adapt to the device it is being viewed on to ensure a consistent structure and experience. This is important because without responsive design sites either look outdated or will load different adaptations which increase the design and maintenance costs.

More so, it massively improves search engine optimization which will make a huge difference to the marketing budget. Almost 60% of Google searches are made on mobile phones, so Google doesn’t like websites that are not mobile-optimized and punishes those sites by pushing them down the search results.

Social media advertising also benefits from improved efficiency and efficacy from mobile optimization. Take Facebook, for example. Over 90% of Facebook users access the service with a mobile device.

Social media is a time-filler; when people are commuting, waiting in line, avoiding the advert break, or enjoying an antisocial lunch to get away from Brian who hasn’t stopped talking about his latest muscle car restoration project – we get it Brian, you build cars as a hobby – and the mobile phone is an easy and readily available distraction.

So when people are clicking your links on social media, they want to travel seamlessly to a site that doesn’t look like 2004 threw up on it.

User experience

User experience is everything these days. A positive experience is accessing an intuitive site that doesn’t require users to pinch and zoom to find something or build up frustration trying to navigate to a page the user knows they can get to in a single click on their PC.

Frustration will send visitors to mobile-optimized competitors and the chances of winning them back are slim with Google figures showing that 61% of users are unlikely to return to a site they found difficult to access.

Google standards dictate that a webpage should load in two seconds. A responsive site can do that; a desktop site loading on a mobile device has no chance.

Those are just three basic reasons to invest in a responsive, mobile-friendly website. If your website isn’t responsive, just think about now. Having a mobile-friendly website is no longer optional. If your mobile visitors don’t have a good experience on your site, you’ll drive away a huge portion of your traffic (and hurt your search engine rankings in the process).

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