With the advent of the iPhone, the iPad, and the Android operating system (which operates both on tablet and cell phone), our world has changed. Apps are cheap-- so much so that Yahoo is already declaring the demise of $60 video games, especially with the death of the Wii. More than that, it's the end of traditional search as we know it, with computing becoming more and more mobile as technology has forged ahead. About 3 years ago, it was declared "the year of the laptop," and this past year, some have called "the year of the smartphone." With all the smartphones being sold out there, and Apple getting in bed with both Sprint and Verizon, no wonder. Data speeds on cell phone networks have never been better with the advent of 4g LTE, and let's face it, the world is using these things.
The most recent statistics I saw said that in the smartphone market, iPhone had a whopping 34% of that market with Android right on it's tail at 33%-- and this was before iPhone was released on Verizon and Sprint. We don't honestly expect for Blackberry to last. Sorry "brick" fans with your nice touchable querty keyboards, which honestly, I miss so I could text and drive at the same time while my eyes were still on the road. Peripherally speaking, this author is VERY SURPRISED that the DOT of most states hasn't come after smartphone makers, as automotive accidents have got to be increased since the advent of the smartphone-- because it requires you to look at the keyboard while you're driving-- thus, sharing the attention of your eyes on the road with your pretty smartphone screen. Back to my original thought though-- there are lots of these mobile devices out there, and the statistics don't even include tablet computing which uses a mobile OS as it's platform. With mobile computing devices now becoming commonplace, it is inevitable that search is now moving in the direction of these new mobile computing platforms. Simply put, if you don't have a mobile website for your company, you're missing out-- already.
Late last year, the prediction was that 1 in 4 searches in 2012 would be done through a mobile device-- either a tablet or a smartphone. The reality is that most people have these devices now, and yes, they're using them to search. Our findings show that people are using their iPhones and Androids to search even more than that.
If your website is not mobile friendly, when a prospective client comes to visit your site, you'll be left out in the cold. Why? Because the text on your site is likely created to look optimal on a desktop machine or a laptop, and not a mobile device. This means that when someone does find you on the 'net, the text and images on your site will be *really small* and generally unreadable without enlarging the images on the screen via a series of finger motions.
Mobile websites are generally easy to add, and reasonably priced. What we recommend is that at minimum, each of our clients at the very least have a mobile landing page for their business websites. With that, you want the telephone number prominently placed front and center on the site, and in text, because these smartphones can identify a telephone number printed in text, so that when someone simply clicks it, it auto-dials the number. Pretty cool, huh?
So it's time. If you've not touched your website in 2-3 years, it's time to redesign it anyways, and you want to be sure that when you redesign, you add a mobile page. If you're a Make It Loud client, your website supports mobile computing, however the page still needs to be created and enabled, which you can do by alerting the folks at MIL who will create a page for you and enable it for a modest fee.
So go search, but on your smartphone.
Make It Loud, Inc.