Growth of mobile.
The number of mobile-connected devices will exceed the number of people on earth by the end of 2013. -Cisco, Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2012–2017
On the said Cisco forecast, the growth in the use of such gadgets will arrive at around 7.6 billion, which will be world’s population at that time. According to Search Engine Watch, of the 6.8 billion people on the planet, 5.1 billion of them own a cellphone. As more and more utilize them in their everyday lives, a Google research showed that mobile-friendly sites can turn visitors into customers. In fact, 61% of the users said that they’d quickly go to another site if they didn’t find what they were looking for right away on a mobile copy. 52% claimed that a bad mobile experience made them less likely to engage with a company. Hence, mobile web development has become a must in today’s business strategies.
Mobile-friendly vs. Mobile Site vs. Responsive Design vs. Mobile App
There are four (4) ways you can improve the UX of potential clients. Here they are:
- Mobile-friendly site. This is virtually the same as your main website.
- Design: flexible though there may be instances that scrolling up or down and zooming on objects may be needed
- Key features: text-based contact information; slideshows not made of Flash; small embedded images for faster loading
- Major advantage: one site only, web version is the same as mobile’s.
- When to use: if analytics generates a report that majority of the visits come from the desktop
- Mobile site. This is a reduced form of the web edition, where only a fraction of the content, mostly important ones, is shown.
- Design: minimal; mainly composed of texts and optimized photos; fits the mobile screen perfectly
- Key features: simple and larger navigation buttons; option to view desktop version; click-to-call functionalities where typing is hardly required.
- Major disadvantage: need to maintain two different websites (one is web, one is mobile)
- Responsive Design site. This is a new trend applied by a number of SEO company and professional in the Philippines and abroad. With responsive design, there’s no need to create a secondary site aimed specifically for those who makes the most of the mobile technology.
- Design: very responsive that it automatically adjusts based on the device screen size and orientation
- Cost: Quite expensive due to new technologies used
- Mobile App. This is basically software apps especially designed to run on mobile instruments.
- How it works: a mobile application developer like say in the Philippines creates the application and uploads it in an app marketplace. The user, then, will download it and install on their smartphones or portable gadget.
- Key feature: always available even when you’re not connected to the net.
On the next post, learn more about the differences between Responsive Designed vs Mobile Optimized sites.