ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTOR

Heather Maloney
Heather Maloney Heather Maloney, Founder of Contact Point IT Services and eNudge.com.au, has a Master in Technology (Information Technology) majoring in the web, and has over 16 years experience in the IT industry, most of which has been focused on delivering business benefits via the use of internet related technologies. Recent achievements: Contact Point were appointed to the Centrelink Creative Design Panel, serving around 30 Federal Government Departments with website design and development services, commencing October 2011.

Heather Maloney has written 38 article(s) for us.

Visit http://www.contactpoint.com.au

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Every B2C Website Should Be Mobile Friendly

August 20, 2012 | Heather Maloney

Discover why having a mobile friendly version of your website is now crucial for your business.
Discover why having a mobile friendly version of your website is now crucial for your business.

If your business provides products or services to consumers, then your website must be mobile friendly. 

More and more, consumers are turning to their mobile phone to get things done when they are out and about, or when they have 10 minutes free while waiting for their next appointment. 

If your website isn’t optimised for a mobile phone, meaning that the smart phone user has to zoom in and out and pan across and down – and that’s just to find your phone number! – then chances are they will move on or get frustrated with dealing with you.

Having a mobile friendly version of your website is all about being easy to do business with.

For some great examples of B2C mobile friendly websites, check out:

www.afl.com.au – I love the fact that I can scroll through the games in the current round, and view the ladder, very easily in my mobile phone viewport.

www.masterlocksmiths.com.au – yes, this is one of our clients, but definitely worth a mention!  Find a locksmith at that crucial moment when you’ve locked yourself out of your home or car using the streamlined mobile version of their website.  Of course, the phone number of your selected locksmith can be clicked to call, and while you’re waiting for the technician to re-establish your access, you can review the locksmith via the website as well.

www.anz.com.au – in fact, all the major banks have a mobile friendly version of their website.  These are generally easier and quicker to use than their full website, which is probably because instead of trying to be all things to all people, with your mobile optimised website you can afford to pull out just the functions that make sense to do on a mobile, and provide a link back to the “full website” for everything else.  For the Bank’s purposes, an App is even better, but that’s a topic of an earlier post.

7 Key Characteristics of a Mobile Friendly Website

A successful mobile friendly website will have the following characteristics as a minimum:

  1. Automatic detection that a visitor is using a mobile phone, and immediate transition to the mobile version of your website.
  2. Easy to use navigation for a touch screen.  Most smart phone users are going to be using a touch screen, so it’s imperative that your buttons are easy to press.  You will probably reduce the number of things accessible via your mobile friendly website to make it easier to get to the areas of your site most useful for someone out on the road, or using a phone.
  3. Easy access to the full version of your website, so that if there’s something particular your visitor needs which isn’t in the mobile version of your site, they can still get to it.
  4. Clear branding, but you’ll need to make some decisions about how much / little to include on each screen of your mobile optimised website, because obviously space is at a premium.
  5. Clickable phone numbers so that your visitor can easily call you using their phone.
  6. Link your address to a Google Map – this makes it very easy for your customer to navigate to your premises.
  7. An appealing, perhaps cute, design – particularly iPhone users have come to expect a beautiful user interface.

If your website is based on blog technology such as WordPress, it’s possible to have a (somewhat basic) mobile version easily created by just using a plug-in.  There are other tools available to allow you to create a mobile version of your website yourself (and host it externally), but for the very best results, you may need your web developer to design and program a mobile friendly version of your website for you.