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Unread 20th May 2013, 04:55 AM   #1
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Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Rarely do I contribute to Warrior Forums, or any forum, but today I made the exception to talk about something that has really impacted my business and I feel every marketer needs to know this.

We're in an age now where mobile devices are a part of our lifestyles. After recently taking a couple of days to review my analytics on my businesses I understood that there are more people hitting my sites from mobile devices than there are from dekstop computers and laptops.

I'm fortunate to have the skills to be able to design my own web sites, and my old philosophy was to design for desktop computers and to only optimize for mobile if it really needed it. I'd force users to use pinch gestures to navigate my sites - this is really bad.

We can longer think like that!

I was lazy. I will admit it. I thought that it didn't really matter that my site wasn't optimized for mobile devices. In reality it does.

In my case the majority of my visitors are on mobile devices. My sites have nothing to do with mobile phones, and I have no idea why more people are viewing in mobile devices apart from the fact that people browse on the move.

I had to change my philosophy.

All of my sites have now had a complete revamp. I now design using the mobile first philosophy. This means ensuring your site works on a mobile device, then progressively enhancing the experience until you work your way up to the desktop.

And whilst the above paragraph may seem like I'm talking from the point of a designer, it's also apparent in marketing too.

It's no good having a landing page, and a site, that only works in desktop browsers. It's no good having offers on your page that are only useful to desktop users. You'll see a lot more conversions, and response, from your users if you give them a good user experience regardless of what device they are viewing your site in.

People tend to shy away from optimizing for mobile devices because it is more work. It will cost you more money. And it will push back your projects launch if you don't plan for this in advance.

In the long run though you will see more conversions.

On one site, last month alone 68% of my visitors were on mobile devices. The products on this site were only viable to users on a desktop computer. So if the user felt compelled enough to purchase a product, they would have to go from their computer to their desktop to make the transaction. Knowing this, I optimized the site for mobile first, and I pulled in lots of similar products that were usable on my mobile devices. And now I've seen a huge increase in conversions!

I was doing pretty well without targeting mobile devices, so you can imagine how overjoyed I am at all this additional money

This has probably been talked about before, but if you're like I was you'll have ignored it until the last moment until something wakes you up and by which time you've already missed out on a pot of gold.

I hope this is useful to others.

Wishing you all success and wealth,

James
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Unread 20th May 2013, 05:21 AM   #2
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Originally Posted by Sirr View Post

Rarely do I contribute to Warrior Forums, or any forum, but today I made the exception to talk about something that has really impacted my business and I feel every marketer needs to know this.

We're in an age now where mobile devices are a part of our lifestyles. After recently taking a couple of days to review my analytics on my businesses I understood that there are more people hitting my sites from mobile devices than there are from dekstop computers and laptops.

I'm fortunate to have the skills to be able to design my own web sites, and my old philosophy was to design for desktop computers and to only optimize for mobile if it really needed it. I'd force users to use pinch gestures to navigate my sites - this is really bad.

We can longer think like that!

I was lazy. I will admit it. I thought that it didn't really matter that my site wasn't optimized for mobile devices. In reality it does.

In my case the majority of my visitors are on mobile devices. My sites have nothing to do with mobile phones, and I have no idea why more people are viewing in mobile devices apart from the fact that people browse on the move.

I had to change my philosophy.

All of my sites have now had a complete revamp. I now design using the mobile first philosophy. This means ensuring your site works on a mobile device, then progressively enhancing the experience until you work your way up to the desktop.

And whilst the above paragraph may seem like I'm talking from the point of a designer, it's also apparent in marketing too.

It's no good having a landing page, and a site, that only works in desktop browsers. It's no good having offers on your page that are only useful to desktop users. You'll see a lot more conversions, and response, from your users if you give them a good user experience regardless of what device they are viewing your site in.

People tend to shy away from optimizing for mobile devices because it is more work. It will cost you more money. And it will push back your projects launch if you don't plan for this in advance.

In the long run though you will see more conversions.

On one site, last month alone 68% of my visitors were on mobile devices. The products on this site were only viable to users on a desktop computer. So if the user felt compelled enough to purchase a product, they would have to go from their computer to their desktop to make the transaction. Knowing this, I optimized the site for mobile first, and I pulled in lots of similar products that were usable on my mobile devices. And now I've seen a huge increase in conversions!

I was doing pretty well without targeting mobile devices, so you can imagine how overjoyed I am at all this additional money

This has probably been talked about before, but if you're like I was you'll have ignored it until the last moment until something wakes you up and by which time you've already missed out on a pot of gold.

I hope this is useful to others.

Wishing you all success and wealth,

James
Nice post James

Mobile users are so vital right now and small businesses cannot afford to ignore them any longer.

They are missing out on massive opportunities.

I always incorporate mobile marketing in my sales pitches when doing offline sales. Its a massive eye opener for many business owners

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Unread 20th May 2013, 05:25 AM   #3
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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In my case the majority of my visitors are on mobile devices. My sites have nothing to do with mobile phones, and I have no idea why more people are viewing in mobile devices apart from the fact that people browse on the move.
People also need to realise that not all 'mobile' devices are phones.

Tablets are also mobile devices and people are using them at home to browse the net.

It is thought that tablets will outsell laptops this year and at the latest 2014.

I agree that people need to start thinking 'mobile first' for web design now as we are in a transition period.
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Unread 20th May 2013, 05:29 AM   #4
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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With today's technology, a smartphone is way "smarter" than past computers, but mobile doesn`t resume only to phones, there are all devices which can connect and surf internet on the go. And as people are more busy, mobile devices are part of our everyday life, so can't be ignored.
Thanks for the post, James .

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Unread 20th May 2013, 06:08 AM   #5
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Great post!
I also agree with the comments, that the term mobile is misleading these days due to the sheer number of devices (phones, mini tablets, tablets, touch-screen all-in-one PCs, desktops - which themselves have a range of screen sizes, with some even using multiple monitors, or monitors rotated to a portrait view). You also can't tell if people view their web browser full screen or as a window, etc.

The term I prefer is 'responsive design' which simply means that the site adapts dynamically to the size of the browser or screen that it has to work with.

There is still a decision to be made as to whether to make a mobile specific version of your site too - but the trend will be that a mobile is not different format, just a different screen size.

But also remember that people on the move will likely have slower internet speeds - so be careful with your page weights too (the total filesize of your page plus all images and code). It's getting better with 4G, but when people are paying by the mb, they will thank you for not cluttering your site with needlessly large images.

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Unread 20th May 2013, 07:36 AM   #6
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Good post. I too noticed this when checking my analytics the other day. The vast majority of my social network traffic is coming from mobile users. With the way the smart phone market is going I think it's safe to assume that the desktop to mobile browsing ratio is only going to keep tipping towards the mobile users.

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Unread 20th May 2013, 08:08 AM   #7
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Originally Posted by SlicedGenius View Post

The term I prefer is 'responsive design' which simply means that the site adapts dynamically to the size of the browser or screen that it has to work with.

There is still a decision to be made as to whether to make a mobile specific version of your site too - but the trend will be that a mobile is not different format, just a different screen size.

But also remember that people on the move will likely have slower internet speeds - so be careful with your page weights too (the total filesize of your page plus all images and code). It's getting better with 4G, but when people are paying by the mb, they will thank you for not cluttering your site with needlessly large images.
Yes you're correct with the terminology, although it's a bit of vague area. Although my sites are responsive and fluid I often find I need to make adaptive changes, especially in terms of navigation for different resolutions. Generally for mobiles I stick to the stacked navigation that seems to be convention which means making adaptive changes.

As for a mobile specific site, well this is what responsive design can do as it allows you to hide content from the mobile user, and restructure it in such a way that everything is laid out vertically - also convention.

The size of your site can be an issue, and there are methods to load smaller versions of images from the server, and even use stuff like yepnope.js to load scripts and stylesheets that are only needed for that browser. It's pretty cool I use it a lot.

Making your site work on mobile devices isn't easy, but it's well worth it. That's why I like to start with mobile first, so I can get everything out the way. Generally all I am editing is the CSS file and restructuring grids to do this. I like using Zurb's Foundation 4 along with SASS and Compass.
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Unread 20th May 2013, 08:10 AM   #8
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Originally Posted by RockNRolla View Post

Good post. I too noticed this when checking my analytics the other day. The vast majority of my social network traffic is coming from mobile users. With the way the smart phone market is going I think it's safe to assume that the desktop to mobile browsing ratio is only going to keep tipping towards the mobile users.
Most defiantly. Mobile users are not going away, they're just going to increase. I think in certain cases, like my own, mobile device users are already tipping beyond desktop users.
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Unread 20th May 2013, 12:07 PM   #9
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Originally Posted by RockNRolla View Post

Good post. I too noticed this when checking my analytics the other day. The vast majority of my social network traffic is coming from mobile users. With the way the smart phone market is going I think it's safe to assume that the desktop to mobile browsing ratio is only going to keep tipping towards the mobile users.
Yes would have to very much agree with this.

Looking at some stats recently the majority of people ONLY access Facebook and Twitter on their phones.

I know I do

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Unread 21st May 2013, 02:09 AM   #10
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Someone here once showed clients who don't have desktop website, they only own mobile website!

I can't believe when I heard it back then ... now it's totally make sense.

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Unread 21st May 2013, 02:23 AM   #11
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Mobile is metaphorically a prince right now and it might eventually be a metaphorical king.

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Unread 21st May 2013, 05:08 AM   #12
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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Originally Posted by Michael Ten View Post

Mobile is metaphorically a prince right now and it might eventually be a metaphorical king.
Mobile will dominate, that's inevitable It's up to us to cater for mobile devices now. I guess this is why a lot of marketers bang on about mobile and are constantly talking about the cash that's available, yet they don't actually explain what they mean by mobile marketing.
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Unread 21st May 2013, 08:06 PM   #13
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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To ignore mobile is to ignore your average user.

Who in their right mind would do that?

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Unread 21st May 2013, 10:41 PM   #14
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Re: Mobile First. Don't Ignore Mobile Users.
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This is happening only because of Social Media and Smart Phones. Everyone is having a Smartphone Today and more than 40% of the people are participating in Social Networking sites everyday. In your busy life smartphones are became essential to check News Feeds and connecting with Friends in Social Media through Mobile Phones.

Yeah.. Alright, any business needs visits to their online business to get promoted and to build the branding. So, here every marketer do concentrates on sources to get the traffic for their business. Obviously Marketer will go to the places where people are living and working to market their business. Same situation here also, Most of the people are using their mobile phones to browse the internet. For this every business is looking for responsive design for their business websites. In this situation we can't ignore the mobile as it is the great source for business promotion.

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