"All I wanted to do was order a pizza, and I couldn't find the phone number." said T324's owner David Daniels.
He was hoping to call directly to the Albany location of a popular local pizza company, and when he loaded the company's site on his phone, he couldn't find it.
The site's text was red on a black background, hard to read in a car at night. The local company's local competitor had a fast-loading, easy-to-use site with the phone number at the top of the site. Guess where David ordered pizza from?
There's still debate about mobile search. Should you optimize, even though it probably means rebuilding your site? Thanks to ranking changes Google plans to roll out soon, you can't afford not to. Google is going to release a new algorithm that will downrank on mobile search sites that aren't optimized for smartphone viewing. Experts predict the rollout could be this Fall.
The return for optimizing is as measurable as the punishment for failing to.
The number of people searching on smartphones is growing fast, by 26% last year. Research shows people are eager to buy on mobile, as long as their user experience is positive, and go to competitors when their experience is negative.
Many business owners think that because they can pull up their website on a phone, they have a mobile website.
But a mobile-optimized size adapts to whatever device it's displayed on, and shows the elements most useful to the customer in each situation. Critical information should appear in a size that's easy to read without scrolling or zooming. Can you afford to turn customers away?
The coming Google change is going to affect everyone, and very few are prepared. Research released June 25 from Pure Oxygen Labs, a mobile search strategy company, indicates "two-thirds of the Fortune 500 are not mobile-optimized for Google". The article reveals just how many companies aren't prepared for the impact Google's new rules will have on their mobile search rankings, and lists tools you can to check your own site's mobile-responsiveness. A good design adapts to the browser and device it's viewed on seamlessly. Google has published guidelines on how to make your website work across multiple devices as well as an excellent article on the "new normal" in multi-screen behaviour.
A SearchEngineLand article by Amy Gesenhues explains the Pure Oxygen research and pro-active measures clearly. While Google hasn't released the new algorithm yet, they have released their recommendations for configuring your site. Experts like Pure Oxygen will be continuing to do research around the implications of the recommendations. We'll be following the story closely and working with our clients who haven't yet updated on building sites that will perform superbly on mobile. We have a responsive update launching this week for one of our longtime clients who moved pro-actively, and we'll be telling you all about it!
If you'd like to learn more about the science of mobile optimization and the approaches currently in use, responsive and adaptive design, we recommend Google's piece on How to Approach Multi-Device Sites for Your Business. The article below and the slideshow by Janine Warner are also very clear and helpful.