Remember when Sony said they wanted their Playstation Portable (or PSP if you’re nasty) to be the walkman of the 21st century?
As we’re all now well aware, Apple beat them to that chase when they released the iPhone, whose first iteration recently celebrated its tenth birthday.
When the iPhone came out, people were convinced that it wouldn’t take off. I mean, really, who would want to spend most of their day staring at a small screen? Or would want to constantly be connected to work? Plus, Mobile Internet was so expensive… who would ever be able to afford phone Internet?
And then, you know, they popularized the Smart Phone and… you know the rest
The mobile revolution didn’t take anyone by surprise, per se, but it certainly came on quicker than anyone could’ve predicted. Smart Phones went from “weird niche thing that only super-rich techies in Silicon Valley own” to “Thing everyone has because, duh” in under a decade.
I mean, my 80 year old grandmother, who remembers the Great Depression, black and white TV, and still clips things out of magazines just got a brand new iPhone 8 for Christmas.
The point is, a lot of people spend a lot of time on phones. In fact, most people who have access to the Internet worldwide have it because of a cell phone, not a personal computer, laptop, or even a tablet.
I wouldn’t say this is a “Trend” watch, as much as it is a reality check — are you mobile optimized?
It seems like something that isn’t necessary. As long as your website works on a phone, it seems like it’d be fine, right?
Literally, you couldn’t be more wrong, even if you tried.
The reality is, if your website isn’t functional on a smaller screen (larger buttons, easy to read and navigate, etc.), people aren’t going to stick around to make it work. In fact, research shows that 30% of users will abandon a transaction if a website isn’t mobile optimized. Yeowch.
There’s also the fact that mobile users don’t behave the same as desktop users. Mobile users consume more visual media, despite their limited bandwidth.
They have less patience than a desktop user (if the page takes longer than three seconds to load, they’re out).
(And how’s that for a paradox — give us more media, but make it load faster! Dance, monkey, dance!)
They make smaller, but more frequent, and consistent purchases, you know, like coffee runs and Amazon dash button purchases — the kind of stuff you can do on your morning commute.
Not to mention, a website with a pleasant mobile experience is going to rank higher with those pesky SEO rankings than a website without. Yes, Google considers this now.
Listen, I know I just threw a lot at you so let me give you the Sparknotes:
- Make it clean, make it simple. (Both in design and in copy.)
- Make sure your text is LARGE and LEGIBLE.
- Make it very, very visual (see points one and two).
Or you know, if you don’t wanna study for the test and just wanna pay someone to take it for you, we here at JSA are happy to do that. Our web team is pretty excellent.
(Sidenote: anyone else remember the abject horror you experienced when you accidentally clicked on the Internet app back in the old days of cell phones? Frantically ex-ing out of it, praying to whatever divinity you believed in that it wouldn’t connect and then charge your parent’s bill? Or is that just me?)