About 19 of every 20 18-29 year olds own a cell phone. For those who have yet to finish high school, it’s seven of every 10. An April 2011 Pew Research Study, “Trends in Mobile Phone Usage,” finds that cell-phone ownership is high among all ethnic groups and even among income levels.
We are truly living in a digital age where information is readily available at the tip of our fingers, as well as the fingers of those who might need our services. A follow-up study by Pew* shows that among 18-29 year-olds, half who have cell-phones have smart-phones and regularly access the internet with them. This means potential clients have the opportunity to access and receive information wherever they are. They have the ability to receive a large range of information in a very short time. With the use of QR codes, social media, mass transit booths, billboards, and digital posters, the value of having a mobile-ready website is becoming more and more evident.
Is your client website smart-phone friendly?
Clearly mobile devices are rapidly becoming the dominant digital format versus desk bound machines. Your website is often your primary marketing tool to reach prospective clients in your community. With technology at the ready for them to search for you, will you be ready to connect with them? Conventional wisdom says that if the person searching for you on the internet can’t find you (quickly), to them, you don’t exist.
In the digital marketing world, effectiveness is measured in seconds, or even fractions of seconds. If your website, in standard form, takes more than a few seconds to download, it may be discarded for a quicker source. Once downloaded, is the information easily navigated? Again, the culture of information at the ready leaves little time to impact the seeker with positive information to make a good connection.
Reasons for a mobile version of your website:
- Interactivity is one of the many ways that Pregnancy Help Centers (PHCs) can reach their demographic. Interactivity on out of home advertising campaigns allows a PHC to make an emotional connection with the client in a public space.
- **According to studies, in three years, mobile will take over desktop internet usage and one half of all local searches will be performed on a mobile device.
- Most people connect while commuting or traveling. However, when they find that sites that they normally access on their PCs at home are not mobile compatible, they might end up switching to a site which provides similar services and is mobile compatible as well. This is what your ministry wants to avoid. The last thing anyone wants is for someone seeking abortion information to go to a site that has a mobile version and is providing abortions at the ready.
- Having a mobile-friendly website also aids in SEO as it helps improve rankings on mobile friendly search engines such as Google or Yahoo.
What are people using their smart-phones/tablets for?
***Smart device owners are taking full advantage of the technology at their fingertips and are spending their time out of home accessing the internet. It would appear that all smart device users, especially younger groups (18-34), have a hunger for information and a need to be entertained. Accessing the internet (80%) and using social networks (67%) are among the top functions used on smart devices.
Younger audiences are more open to interaction. They instinctively understand the relationship between branding and themselves, thus, making them willing participants in the brand/consumer relationship.
Mobile expectations for 2012:
- Smartphone users will reach 106.7 million in 2012, up 18.4% from 2011.
- In 2012, 94% of smart-phones users will be mobile internet users.
- All mobile phone users will reach 242.6 million in 2012, up 2.3% from 2011.
- Smartphone shoppers will reach 68.6 million in 2012.
- Smartphone buyers will reach 36.4 million in 2012.
- 88.1% of US internet users ages 14+ will browse or research products/services online in 2012.
Be sure your website is mobile-friendly. This takes some effort by your web design friends, but clearly the trend suggests it is well worth it. The research suggests this will very soon be the number one way your website is accessed. Option Line is mobile friendly for the very purpose of being available to our target demographic. Your website should be also.
*Pew Research Center, 7/11/2011, http://www.pewinternet.org/~/media//Files/Reports/2011/PIP_Smartphones.pdf.
**CBS.CBS Outdoor Media on the Move. Web 2012. http://www.interactiveeurope.com.
***Bosomworth, Danyl. “Statistics on Mobile Usage and Adoption to Inform your Mobile Marketing Strategy.” Smart Insights. Web 2012. http://www.smartinsights.com/mobile-marketing/mobile-marketing-analytics/mobile-marketing-statistics/.