If you're like most small-business owners, your website is the wheel that keeps the whole operation turning. Without it, leads and online sales would dry up, and what business can survive that?
Despite that reliance, you may very well be one of the 86 percent of small or micro businesses (those with an average of six employees) that hasn't made the switch to mobile-friendly websites. According to the most recent SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard, only 14 percent of respondents have updated their sites for mobile.
Though that may seem like extra credit work, those same respondents reported their efforts paid off by increasing…
- Traffic to their site.
- Sales or inquiries.
There's another big reason to take the mobile plunge: Google's latest algorithm favors mobile-friendly sites, meaning they appear higher in search engine results. So if you don't want your site to get lost in the wasteland of last-page results, it's time to make the change.
Get Your Mobile On: What Small Businesses Need to Know
Since Google released its update in April, websites have already felt the effect. Search Engine Land states despite desktop searches remaining relatively consistent for non-mobile optimized sites, their mobile search rankings took a hit.
You might be wondering why that's such a big deal. People still use their desktop computers to conduct online searches all the time, right? Wrong.
Here are some revealing facts:
- The Washington Post reports 60 percent of web traffic is now mobile.
- The same report affirms that the search page number matters: first page results get 33 percent of the clicks, while the second page only gets one percent.
- Content marketing company BrightEdge reports that since the Google update, there's been a 21 percent dip for non mobile-friendly sites on the first three pages of search results.
Say you haven't optimized your website and someone makes a mobile search using keywords that used to bring your website up on the first page of results. You might be bumped to the second page now where few users bother looking or clicking.
In short, not updating your website for mobile means you're missing opportunities to get your business in front of prospective customers and make sales. You can read more about that in "Small Businesses: For Best Results, Treat Your Website Like a Succulent."
Quick Tips for Optimizing Your Website for Mobile
In the mobile game, speed is everything. If your site takes too long to load its content, smartphone or tablet users usually navigate elsewhere (sometimes right to your competitor's lightning-fast page).
Work with a web developer or use a web template like Squarespace to ensure your site…
- Doesn't use Flash. Mobile users may or may not have this plugin, which means they miss out on the action.
- Is pop-up free. Let's face it: no one likes these things. Get rid of pop-ups once and for all – your users will thank you.
- Uses large buttons. Most mobile users don't have dainty bird fingers. Make sure visitors don't have to worry about accidentally clicking on links or buttons when they are just trying to scroll.
You can test your site's mobile compatibility by using Google's Mobile-Friendly Test tool, which analyzes a URL for its mobile-friendly design. For more mobile optimization tips, check out Moz's guide.