June 17, 2016 –

The power of mobility

Author: Alex Clough
Alex Clough
Managing Director
Photo by: NeONBRAND

Google wants to help small businesses.

Today, the multinational tech conglomerate will introduce an app by which small businesses can test the functionality and performance of their website across multiple platforms. For free.

The idea is to make websites more user-friendly.

According to its recent survey, Google says more searches occur on smartphones than traditional computers. And that 90 percent of people leave if a mobile site performs poorly.

How big a deal is that, for your average business? How likely is it to affect the bottom line?

According to Google, the impact is incredible.

Their survey claims that people check their phones 150 times a day on average. That’s a lot of time spent looking at your phone.

The 90 percent exit rate is an enormous rate of customers leaving your site if your website doesn’t perform on a mobile device. Imagine owning a shop where 9 out of 10 customers who walk in immediately walk back out. You’d be disheartened to see this in reality, but that’s how you should be considering your online website traffic. Each visitor is a prospective customer and you should be doing everything possible to encourage their engagement and ultimately their custom.

Many small businesses simply don’t invest in mobile-specific web design.

The latest research from Yodle and Research Now found that 52 percent of small businesses surveyed have optimised their websites to be mobile responsive. However, according to eMarketer, a separate survey by RBC found that around 40 percent of small businesses do not have a mobile responsive website.

The reason: to save money, and to keep costs low. However, it’s not saving you money, it’s actually costing you customers.

Today, almost all of your customers live online, on their smartphones (150 times a day!), can you really afford to not have a user friendly mobile responsive website?

Google certainly doesn’t think so.

This offering fits nicely for Google with its old “Don’t Be Evil” slogan. The company has taken a lot of criticism over the past few years, for doing the evil things it said it wouldn’t do (a spot of privacy invasion, some bending/breaking/snapping of anti-trust laws and establishing anti-poaching cabals). But this is an easy win for the tech giant.

The pressure is on small businesses to keep up with a consumer culture that is becoming increasingly focused on mobile friendly sites (more than 50 percent of all searches now come from a tablet or smartphone).

If you still don’t have a mobile responsive site and are still not convinced your business needs one? Be prepared to wave your customers good bye, as they will be heading off to browse your competitors.