Hi I’m Catherine, today I’ll be talking about how businesses are failing to recognise the importance of mobile.
I am regularly having conversations with clients, colleagues and friends who run businesses about site performance and specifically their mobile site performance.
A challenge we have as marketers is that we often have to rely on development teams to make technical changes on our behalf.
We can be across the need for site changes or improvements, but emphasising the importance and impact on digital strategy can be tough.
I’ll share today a few considerations that can be leveraged to improve the performance of this partnership between marketing and tech.
I’ll start with discussing the Mobile-first index, a very interesting phenomena that I believe everyone in Digital is waiting with baited breath to see how extreme it will be.
Google announced the Mobile-first index in 2016 and is yet to release it, with discussion around it suggesting it could be released in early 2018.
This update is different from other mobile updates as it goes to the core of Google’s algorithm – they are planning to primarily use the mobile version of a site’s content to rank pages from that site, whether the search is on desktop or mobile.
It’s a game changer.
It’s a line in the sand from Google that if your UX, speed, and usability is not up to scratch on mobile then your hard earned rankings on desktop search will be lost.
Warning enough to prioritise your mobile approach?
A big part of this is the speed of your site on mobile.
Everybody wants everything instantly, and that includes load time of websites.
Patience is at an all time low.
A couple of quick stats – pages that load 1 second faster see an increase of 27% in conversion rate and Amazon lose $1.6 billion dollars for every second that it takes a page of theirs to load.
A consideration to improve your site speed is implementing AMP – Accelerated Mobile Pages – across your top pages on mobile.
This is likely your Blog, or if you run an eCommerce site, your Product pages.
AMP significantly decreases load time, and as a result, sites are seeing an increased conversion rate on mobile.
Plus Google is prioritising AMP pages and showing users the ‘lightning’ bolt in search results, which is increasing click through rate, as users know they will receive a good experience.
The challenge with AMP is that it strips back styling and design elements that can slow down the load time, so the pages are much plainer and simpler in design.
The reality however is that this technology is moving at a fast pace and your development team need to start reviewing how it can be implemented best for your site.
Are they up to date?
Are they informed?
Is this option being considered for implementation?
I often hear from clients and people in the industry that conversions on mobile are so much lower and that the mobile campaigns are not generating the same performance.
For many businesses, mobile is the discovery piece and the engagement piece.
As a result your digital strategy needs to take a mobile first approach and acknowledge the part that it plays in the customer journey.
With this said, mobile can and does play a part in conversion.
Do not resign yourself to the fact that your form, or your checkout process does not work as well on mobile – review how you can make it better with your development team.
For example, why not leverage Facebook Canvas Ads or Instagram lead ads to give a better experience for your customers on mobile.
Platforms such as Facebook and Instagram are providing us with the best technology, so why not use them to move your customers through the funnel on mobile?
To say mobile is important is nothing new.
The question to ask is are you acting enough on it?
Are you pushing your technical team to prioritise it?
Are you valuing that discovery and engagement phase enough with how you split your advertising spend?
Are you getting creative enough with your strategies to make them work on mobile and connect with your desktop or in store experience?
To end anecdotally, I sat on a panel judging 3rd year Digital Future University students recently, and their digital business prototypes only focused on mobile.
When one group was questioned about a desktop version, they looked blank.
Now I do not agree at all with ignoring the desktop experience, but it just goes to show that the next generation aren’t even thinking about desktop.
So let’s make sure we’re ready!