Nomophobia: fear of being without your mobile phone. An acronym of “no-mobile-phone-phobia” and officially listed in Merriam-Webster, this 21st century neurosis is very real.
Let’s look at the numbers according to Harris International: Nearly two-thirds of us are rarely five feet from our mobile phone, and 71% of us sleep with our cellular soulmate. In short: we’re all addicted to mobile.
And our addiction is deepening. ComScore recently reported that, while most e-commerce transactions still occur on desktop, mobile makes up 65% of consumers’ digital media time.
Despite this, most brands still make desktop their priority marketing channel—an approach at odds with consumer behavior. To engage online customers and creep up the search results, brands must adopt a multi-platform strategy and a mobile-responsive website.
On April 21, 2015, Google released an algorithm update that would “have significant impact in our search results.” The update expanded the use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. It essentially rewards mobile-optimized websites with higher positions in the SERPs.
It makes sense. Google’s defining mission—to make the world’s information “universally accessible and useful”—hinges on the speed and ease with which they deliver information. Sending users to a website poorly optimized for their device falls far short of achieving this goal.
While mobility is only one of over 200 ranking factors Google accounts for, mobile responsiveness is increasingly critical. A fast-loading website with a fluid mobile experience will consistently rank above a static, designed-for-desktop competitor.
Ensuring your website looks fantastic on every screen is worth the effort—and a need not to drag your heels on. While Google’s Zineb Ait Bahajji stated that mobile responsiveness wouldn’t affect desktop results, this will likely change in future. Beyond this, great mobile UX affects other factors that determine ranking, such as bounce rate.
Don’t be intimidated by the task of making your website responsive. While the technology can be complicated—and we can help with this—the strategy is simple: on mobile, design everything to make the experience easy for the user.
First, consider the most common tasks users will perform on your mobile site. Note them down, and then map the most direct journey toward task completion. Keep interactions minimal—mobile users have no patience for endless tapping and scrolling, especially when the click-targets are too small to click.
Is your website mobile responsive? If you’re not sure, give Google’s handy tool to test mobile-friendliness a go. And if you need to optimize your website for mobile—for better search ranking and to captivate consumers with unbeatable UX—we’re here to help. Check out our responsive web design services.