No matter what industry you're in, it's very likely that smartphones and other mobile devices have had an impact your business. Especially within the U.S, mobile marketing has transformed the way people choose where to shop locally, helped consumers gain access to more product information and created new avenues for selling items to customers.
WIth mobile becoming so vital for successful modern businesses, it's necessary for business owners and marketers to ensure that their company's website meets the high stand consumers now set for mobile website. Created a good mobile experience for consumers can be harder than it looks, with a lot of ways to turn off customers through small annoyance.
A recent study from Connexity cited by eConsultancy, surveyed 1,000 mobile consumers in the U.K. and identified the top eight things that frustrated mobile shoppers. Granted, this survey doesn't include any data from shoppers in the U.S., but the issues they identified are pretty universal. No matter what side of the pond a business is one, fixing these eight annoyances will help improve your mobile marketing.
Hard to Click Buttons
One in three (33%) of the people surveyed by Connexity said they were annoyed when they needed to enlarge the screen in order to find clickable areas or buttons were too hard to click. The reason this was the most often cited annoyance is clear. If it's hard to navigate the site due to small buttons, then the mobile experience is going to suffer.
This is why it's important for business owners to have a separate mobile version of their site. Having a responsive site does much to help with size issues. But things like cascading menus or small form fields aren't always automatically addressed. Making sure buttons are easy to click will have a noticeable effect on click-through rates and hopefully lead to increased revenue.
Slow Loading Pages
The second most often cited complaint was slow load times for pages. One in four (25%) of the respondents mentioned this annoyance during the survey Long load times are bad for all websites, including desktop versions, but speed is even more essential for mobile marketers. If someone wants product information while shopping in store, or they're looking for a business near by to visit, being able to find the answer quickly is important to the consumer.
Use page analytics tools from services like Google to test your mobile site to see if it's up to par on page load speed. Remember, not all consumers have the same mobile internet speed or device power. So it's better to build sites so they run at acceptable speeds for slow devices and at amazingly fast speeds for power devices with faster internet. This may mean using smaller images and less flashy code. These sacrifices are often good trade offs for increased page load speeds.
Missing Features from Mobile Site
The third most listed annoyance also shows the need for balance when creating a mobile site. Though it's necessary to have a fast mobile site, this can't be done at the expense of important features. One in five (21 percent) of the survey respondents noted frustration when they had to use the "Request Desktop Version" of a site to get the features they need.
It's understandable that features will often need to be modified to make a site work on mobile devices. But if so much has been removed that consumers will need the desktop version to complete common actions, then the mobile site is more of a hinderance to customers than a helper. Business owners and webmasters should do a walkthrough of their desktop and mobile versions of their sites to ensure that it's easy to complete key and common actions easily on both. If making a mobile site with all the features of the desktop becomes too difficult, then it may be necessary to commission the development of an app that provides all features to mobile customers.
Text Too Small
Though text size is one of the easiest things to fix and has been touted as a part of good mobile web design since day one, 17 percent of U.K. consumers surveyed were still dealing with mobile sites with text that was too small to read. If the customer has to enlarge the page and scroll around awkwardly to read every paragraph, they aren't going to bother reading the entire thing. This could lead to the reader missing some crucial piece of information in an article or potential customers leaving before the ad copy had a chance to work its magic.
Pictures Too Small
Similarly, 17 percent cited too small images on mobile sites. It's necessary to reduce image size from the maximums for desktops, since they won't be viewed at max resolution. However, imagery is an important part of mobile, so webmaster need to make it possible to click on an image and then see an image with high enough quality to look good on a modern mobile device. Nobody is pleased when the maximum resolution of the product they wanted to look at is a 150 px by 150 px square.
Checkout is the most important part of the sales cycle because it's where most sales breakdown. People can be all onboard until it comes time to finalize the deal with their credit card. Anything that slows down the checkout process gives the consumer a chance to fall out of the sales cycle. And in the Connexity study, 17 percent of consumer were still experiencing problems with mobile check out.
Lack of Product Information
People often use their mobile devices to search for product information about things they want to buy in store or online. If a site only has sparse information, business owners can expect shoppers to be displeased. Such a sentiment was expressed by 12 percent of the shoppers in the survey, who noted "Not Enough Product Information Available" as a common online shopping frustration.
Poor Data Security
Nearly one in 10 people surveyed admitted to being concerned about the security of their data on devices. This is something that business owners must take seriously. This means using the most up-to-date data protection methods and letting their customers know how the company is working to protect them while shopping online. With businesses and hospitals facing ransomware, to private citizens and presidential candidates facing data hacks, consumers have reason to be concerned and website owners need to address that concern with vigor.
Rather than just see this a list of potential flaws in your website, this data can serve as a blueprint for creating better mobile experiences. This is something echoed by the researchers in their report.
"Mobile shoppers are frustrated by online experiences that are compromised by the size of their device," said Hayley Silver, VP of insights at Connexity, according to media reports. "Until the technology provides more flexible options for display, brands need to get smart about the way information is displayed and accessed."
"To encourage customers' loyalty to their mobile site, retailers must reassure shoppers that their information is safe by using terminology such as 'enter secure checkout' throughout the site, and offering further information about security measures for those who want to learn more."
For more news about using mobile marketing for your business, read this article on how mobile devices are changing the way consumers shop for travel destinations.