Is your firm’s website mobile-friendly? If you’re not sure, take a moment now to pull it up on your smartphone or tablet. Is the home page cut off on one side or the other? Is the content jumbled?
When a website is mobile-friendly, the user interface will adjust based on the display. Content will expand, collapse, show or hide based on the size of the screen. This guarantees that anyone viewing your website, whether on a desktop, smartphone, or tablet, experiences a controlled and seamless user-experience.
If you’re not sure whether your website is mobile-friendly, Google can test your site. Just paste the URL of your website and click “Run Test.” Within a few seconds, Google will tell you if your site is mobile friendly and where you need to improve. Why is this important? Here are five reasons.
Desktops are no longer #1
In October of 2016, internet usage by mobile and tablet devices exceeded desktop worldwide for the first time ever. This milestone significant because it demonstrates that mobile devices are becoming our primary access point to the internet. We’re no longer living in a world where accessing a website from a mobile device can be considered the exception. To put it simply, you need to be thinking mobile because that’s where your clients are. You’ll also want to think just how much data is transferred from internet usage, especially when usage is only ever increasing, whether it be from desktop browsers or mobile applications, as an example to see the rate of growth, Americans generate 3,138,420 GB of internet traffic per minute, that’s per minute, not day. If you’re wanting to ensure your website and its traffic can view and browse unimpeded, you’ll want to take into consideration the amount of traffic and data that will need to be catered for.
Mobile isn’t just for e-commerce
Seventy-nine percent of Americans now shop online, but having a mobile-friendly site isn’t just for e-commerce companies. People are doing all sorts of research online, and lack of mobile optimization affects whether they spend time on your site or leave it immediately and move on to your competitor. Nobody wants to deal with squinting, pinching, zooming, scrolling to find the information they need. When your website is mobile-optimized, anyone who visits your website will have a proper experience. That will encourage them to see you as a credible source for information and services.
It’s a business imperative
Having a web presence is important, and you’ve likely invested quite a bit of time, effort and resources into building your website and providing valuable content. That effort is in vain if clients can’t find your site. In 2015, Google rolled out a major update to its search engine to expand the use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. If your site isn’t optimized for mobile, Google may penalize you with a lower rank in its search engine results. Simply put, websites that are optimized for mobile will be found quicker than those that aren’t.
Reach more clients, faster
When your current clients look for you online, they may type your URL directly into the address field or search for your firm’s name. But what if they search for “[Your city] CPA,” “international tax accountant,” “employee benefit plan auditor” or another service you want to be known for? Without a mobile-friendly site, potential clients are less likely to find you, and more likely to overlook you. Having a mobile website means your customer base will automatically widen to anyone who performs a mobile search.
You want to be seen as modern and relevant
Actions speak louder than words. A mobile-friendly website helps your firm stand out and presents a positive, contemporary brand identity for your firm. You can immediately engage current and potential clients with mobile-specific features such as click-to-call and mapping functions. It makes a positive statement before you’ve said anything. On the other hand, websites that aren’t optimized for mobile make your firm look like a digital dinosaur. In most cases, that will send potential clients looking elsewhere.
All of this doesn’t mean you should ignore those clients who still use desktops and laptops. They still account for a significant portion of your client base and new prospects. Instead, opt for a mobile responsive website that recognizes the device being used and resizes itself accordingly.
About the Author
As the Marketing Manager for Boomer Consulting, Inc., Heather Robinson’s primary focus is on developing the firm’s marketing strategy and brand awareness to help drive business results. She manages and executes marketing and business development initiatives, with daily oversight of the website, social media, and thought leadership content. In addition, as a part of the Business Development team, she provides leadership and strategic planning on marketing and communication practices for the firm.