Mobile-friendly sites turn visitors into customers

Tuesday, September 25, 2012 | 1:24 PM

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The following post originally appeared on the Google Mobile Ads Blog.

In this world of constant connectivity, consumers expect to find the information that they want, when they want it - especially when they’re on the go. We know that this applies to their web browsing experiences on mobile, so we took a deeper look at users’ expectations and reactions towards their site experiences on mobile. Most interestingly, 61% of people said that they’d quickly move onto another site if they didn’t find what they were looking for right away on a mobile site. The bottom line: Without a mobile-friendly site you’ll be driving users to your competition. In fact, 67% of users are more likely to buy from a mobile-friendly site, so if that site’s not yours, you’ll be missing out in a big way. 


Discover these and more findings from, What Users Want Most From Mobile Sites Today, a study from Google (conducted by Sterling Research and SmithGeiger, independent market research firms). The report surveyed 1,088 US adult smartphone Internet users in July 2012.  

The problem (and opportunity) is big...
While nearly 75% of users prefer a mobile-friendly site, 96% of consumers say they’ve encountered sites that were clearly not designed for mobile devices. This is both a big problem and a big opportunity for companies seeking to engage with mobile users.

Mobile-friendly sites turn users into customers
The fastest path to mobile customers is through a mobile-friendly site. If your site offers a great mobile experience, users are more likely to make a purchase. 
  • When they visited a mobile-friendly site, 74% of people say they’re more likely to return to that site in the future
  • 67% of mobile users say that when they visit a mobile-friendly site, they’re more likely to buy a site’s product or service
Not having a mobile-friendly site helps your competitors  
A great mobile site experience is becoming increasingly important, and users will keep looking for a mobile-friendly site until they find one that works for them. That means your competitors will benefit if your site falls down on the job (and vice versa).
  • 61% of users said that if they didn’t find what they were looking for right away on a mobile site, they’d quickly move on to another site
  • 79% of people who don’t like what they find on one site will go back and search for another site
  • 50% of people said that even if they like a business, they will use them less often if the website isn't mobile-friendly
Non-mobile friendly sites can hurt a company’s reputation
It turns out that you can lose more than the sale with a bad mobile experience. A site that’s not designed for mobile can leave users feeling downright frustrated, and these negative reactions translate directly to the brands themselves. 
  • 48% of users say they feel frustrated and annoyed when they get to a site that’s not mobile-friendly
  • 36% said they felt like they’ve wasted their time by visiting those sites
  • 52% of users said that a bad mobile experience made them less likely to engage with a company
  • 48% said that if a site didn’t work well on their smartphones, it made them feel like the company didn’t care about their business
Takeaways
While the research confirms what we already suspected -- that mobile users actively seek out and prefer to engage with mobile-friendly sites -- it’s a sobering reminder of just how quickly and deeply users attitudes about companies can be shaped by mobile site experiences. Having a great mobile site is no longer just about making a few more sales. It’s become a critical component of building strong brands, nurturing lasting customer relationships, and making mobile work for you. 

To learn more about our study
  • Click here and join our free webinar on September 26 at 1 p.m. EST  / 10 a.m. PST
  • Get help on building a mobile-friendly site, visit howtogomo.com.
Posted by: Masha Fisch, Google Mobile Ads Marketing