Smartphones and mobile devices have revolutionized the way customers interact with businesses. From banking to grocery shopping, customers are starting to do all their transactions using their smartphones. Customers want to live a ‘mobile-only’ lifestyle. They do not like to be tied down to a desktop or a laptop with a wired internet. They want mobile-internet, they want to be on the move and they want to perform all possible tasks using the tiniest possible device (Apple launching a smaller, power-packed 4-inch iPhone SE in 2016 is proof that customers still love smaller devices). That is why smartphones sales keeps increasing.
And customers expect businesses to help them in their quest for a ‘mobile-only’ lifestyle. As a business, if you succeed in helping your customer live that ‘mobile-only’ life, then you will be rewarded with their loyalty (and a share of their wallet).
- Is your business ready for your ‘mobile-only’ customer?
- Are you helping your customers transact with your business, from start to finish, on their smart phone?
Answers to these questions can make a big difference to your business growth in the days to come.
Take a look at these interesting statistics from pewinternet.org that shows how customer use smartphones for activities beyond calling, texting and basic internet browsing:
- 57% have used their phone to do online banking.
- 40% to look up government services or information.
- 30% to take a class or get educational content.
- 62% of smartphone owners have used their phone in the past year to look up information about a health condition.
- 44% have used their phone to look up real estate listings or other information about a place to live.
- 43% to look up information about a job.
Impact of Mobile Optimization on Search Rankings:
Since customers are giving such importance to their ‘mobile-only’ lifestyle, search engines are giving preference to mobile-friendly websites.
Google officially announced in February 2015, the release of a significant new mobile-friendly ranking algorithm that was designed to give a boost to mobile-friendly webpages in their mobile search results. Later in May 2015, Google confirmed that they were seeing more mobile searches than desktop searches in terms of volumes.
Which means, if your business is not mobile-ready, then you may already be losing out on the SEO front and your business is probably not showing up on search results. So, it is time for you to set this right.
How to get your business ready for the smartphone era
Rethink your business from a mobile perspective. The practical way to do that is to imagine 2 scenarios:
- Internal: Imagine that there are no desktops anymore in this world and you have to run your entire business operations on your mobile device.
- External: Since there are no desktops, your customers can will interact with you only using their mobile devices
These 2 scenarios might be an imagined one right now, but the way smartphones are evolving, it will soon become the reality.
Now ask yourself these 3 questions:
1. In a mobile-only world, how will I run my business operations?
- Start using mobile friendly business applications for requirements like CRM, Accounting Tools, Task Management Tools, Document Sharing Tools, Billing Solutions, Storage Solutions, etc.
- Develop in-house software that are mobile friendly for your business operations
- Track, measure and review your business operations using mobile-friendly methods like using mobile apps to track performance, etc.
2. In a mobile-only world, how will I present by business information and my products/services to my audience?
- Start by creating a mobile-responsive website
- Develop mobile apps for your products or services (if the app has a specific functionality)
- Conduct usability tests and ensure that mobile users are able to navigate your online properties with ease
3. In a mobile-only world, how will I market my product or services and find new customers?
- Inbound Marketing: The best way to find new customers online is to let them find you! This is called ‘Inbound marketing’. As an agency, we have been implementing this strategy for many of our clients with encouraging results. And Inbound marketing is well suited for a ‘mobile only’ world, since it is driven by content and is based on your website, blog and social media platforms.
- Create content that is optimised and customised for a mobile world. When you write blogs or create visual content like images or videos, create them with your ‘mobile only’ users in mind. This means you will not create long videos (which may not hold the attention of a smartphone user) and you will avoid having tiny texts on images which may not be visible in a 4-inch Apple SE.
Answering these 3 questions and implementing the answers will prepare and get your business ready for the smartphone era.
Hope this helps. Leave your thought and inputs in the comments section. I appreciate it.
All the very best!
(Click on image to enlarge)