Mobile First – Interview Excerpt from Mobile Beyond Podcast

by on October 9, 2012 · 6 comments

Mobile-First

Brian Prows from MobileBeyond.com interviewed me a few weeks ago about the trend to mobile devices and why small businesses need a mobile solution. Click here to read the complete transcript.

We talked about many aspects of small business marketing in the podcast, but in case you don’t have time to listen to the interview, here are the highlights about mobile websites:

The Mobile Landscape

  • Mobile visitors are goal oriented – People who visit your website from a mobile device are very “goal oriented”. They view less pages and spend less time than their desktop counterparts. Mobile users are pulling up your site to look for something specific like phone number, directions, or business hours. So you have to put that information front-and-center and you need a mobile specific page.
  • Mobile overtakes desktop – Research shows that more people in the coming year will access the web via a mobile device than a desktop machine. That’s a huge opportunity for a small business to get an edge on competition and an opportunity for web developers to offer solutions.
  • Small Businesses are missing out – 85% of small businesses do not have a solution for mobile.

What Does “Mobile First” Mean?

  • Start with Mobile – When you build a new product or a service, you build the mobile site first and develop for other devices later. It’s easier to expand your website or app based on larger screens than it is to shrink your app down to fit mobile displays.
  • Device Specific Pages – Small businesses need a page that’s formatted just for mobile devices. In two seconds, a viewer needs to know who you are, where you are, and how to contact you. Mobile visitors are quickly becoming the majority, so don’t put your visitors into “Pinch and Zoom Hell” while they’re trying to find you while they are on the go!
  • Mobile is here now. We’re seeing it all around us. On the street and from the comfort of home people are using their mobile devices to find a place for dinner, check out shopping reviews or find a map. Businesses need to have a website ready to display on any number of devices like iPhones, Androids, Windows Phone, iPad, etc. Mobile is something that every business should be thinking about and needs to address today, not tomorrow.

You can download or listen to the entire podcast here. (We talk about “Mobile First” around the 15:00 mark.)

How are you addressing this mobile shift on the web? I’d love to hear what you are doing in the comments below!

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Don is an entrepreneur based in Silicon Valley. He founded Expand2Web and is the publisher of the Expand2Web Blog, and the GetFiveStars Customer Feedback and Reviews service.

Don has written 313 articles on Expand2Web

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Julie Larson October 9, 2012 at 7:14 pm

Right on, Don Campbell! Google’s The Mobile Playbook is telling business owners that having a mobile friendly website should be their top priority.

Reply

Don Campbell October 10, 2012 at 10:41 am

Thanks Julie!

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Travis Van Slooten October 10, 2012 at 8:19 am

Don:

Fantastic podcast! I didn’t listen to it but I just read the transcript. Everything you talked about regarding the challenges small businesses face is spot on. I particularly liked your point about social media being overhyped for small businesses. I couldn’t agree more, but like you mentioned, it does work for some businesses.

I have a question about your small business theme. I know it comes “mobile ready” but is it mobile ready just for smartphones or tablets as well?

Travis Van Slooten

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Don Campbell October 10, 2012 at 10:42 am

Thanks Travis!
Yes the SmallBiz theme is mobile ready for smart phones. For tablets, it currently displays the regular website which works well in most cases. But there are many different sized tablets coming out now so we are creating a “responsive” version of it that will adapt to any screen size.

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Julie Larson October 10, 2012 at 11:10 am

Don and Travis, my partner and I are finding that how the tablet is connecting to the internet determines whether or not a mobile version or a desktop version of a site is served up.

If the tablet is connecting through the wifi of a Starbucks or other public place, the desktop version comes up. If the tablet or iPad is connected through the device’s Internet connection, the mobile version is displayed.

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Travis Van Slooten October 10, 2012 at 1:09 pm

@Julie:

That’s interesting. Are you finding this consistently across the board or only occasionally?

@Don:

Responsive design…bingo! Those are just the words I wanted to hear. Any ETA when that will be rolling out?

Travis Van Slooten

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