1. Have you stripped away any unnecessary content?
Tips by Dean Ronnie, content marketing manager, Miromedia
“Get rid of any graphics, videos, animations or anything else that means your mobile website takes forever to load. When optimising, consider that the visitor may not be viewing your site using a strong Wi-Fi connection. They could be viewing it via a prehistoric 3G connection (or worse). Slow loading means frustration for the customer, which means they will tap away and shop somewhere else.
“You also need to make sure that your mobile landing pages are right for the user and that they navigate to the page that’s relevant. If a user is looking to purchase fireworks, for instance, the page should have clearly laid-out products that can be quickly and easily purchased without having to navigate elsewhere. Also ensure that pages are easy to move around, easy to buy from and, of course, make sure your products are at the right price.
“Don’t be precious about anything. If it’s unnecessary for mobile, get rid. Most of the time, people are using their mobiles to make a decision, not research.”
2. Have you made the purchasing process ludicrously easy?
“Mobile browsing is all about convenience. People want to do things quickly. They don’t want to be going through multiple stages before they can buy something. So make the purchasing process as simple as possible by using the available technology – and that includes in-store. Make paying as simple as entering a password or scanning your fingerprint.
“Simplify the checkout process as much as you can. Ask your customers to enter only the necessary information. Ideally, your checkout process should be three steps or fewer.
“Think about integrated marketing as well. If using an app, include a ‘buy’ button that seamlessly allows the person to purchase without an interrupted experience.
“If you want to look to the (near) future, the next big thing looks to be shopping via Instagram. With its new ‘shop now’ feature, retailers will be able to tag products in images. By tapping these, users will immediately be taken to the relevant webpage to buy. It’s welcome news for businesses that sell niche products.”
3. Consider the context of the user experience
Tip by Inigo Antolin, head of marketing, Appleyard London
“Make your mobile site as fast as you can. Half of users expect mobile websites to load in less than two seconds, or they will leave, according to data from Kissmetrics. Bear in mind that mobile usage is already bigger than desktop, but it tends to be more on the go. It can happen on a short tube ride, or in a supermarket queue. Whatever the situation, mobile experiences tend to be really short.
“SMEs have just a few seconds or minutes before the user jumps into the next thing, because, for example, the train has already arrived at its destination.”
4. Does your website fit the device screen size?
“Having a responsive site is a must. I would recommend that businesses start by asking themselves: what time of the day and which days of the week do mobile users visit our site? Which devices do they use? Do they spend less or more than desktop? How do they pay for purchases?
“Google Analytics is a free tool that can help you work out the answers to these questions. The next step is to run different tests for a limited time and learn from them. This needs to be an ongoing process, because mobile usage also depends on different factors, such as the weather. Sunshine, for example, means that users tend to spend more time outdoors and using more their mobiles.
“As a flower retailer, Monday is a really important day, on mobile and desktop. But this depends a lot on the industry, or even the specific page of the site. For example, the pages that we have promoting Sunday delivery don’t get any traffic until Wednesday, peaking on Saturday morning.”
5. Are you trying to run before you can walk?
Tip by Daniel Döderlein, chief executive, AUKA
“SMEs must figure out how using mobile can enhance the customer’s existing experience. For retailers, the end goal is to make their life as easy and pain-free as possible, to keep them coming back.
“That includes making it easy for shoppers to put items in their shopping basket, right through to the payments process (even providing automatic e-receipts). All of these things make the difference on mobile.
“Other examples of how we used m-commerce include scannable purchase codes in shop windows and magazines, with special offers to entice people in store. Remember, m-commerce also facilitates push-notifications based on geo-locations, enabling you to target and market like never before.
“The data you collect via mobile also gives you, as the retailer, a deeper level of customer insight, which is the key to unlocking a whole new level of marketing power for your business.”