Welcome. Today I hope to explain to you why having a website that is easily accessible to mobile devices is not only crucial to building your organization into the life changing force that you hope it can be, but also how can also help to take you to more people and places then you have originally hoped.
The Internet has become an essential part of our every day lives. It has effected the way we shop, interact with our friends and family, and get information about the things that we are interested in. No would deny that having a strong website is a must for any organization that hopes to be successful. I want to ask you one simple question though. How do you access the web?
Do you use a home computer or laptop through a wireless connection
Do you use your smartphone to update your Facebook or Twitter pages, or to find the latest score of the game.
Do you use a wireless tablet to download your favorite books or for the convenience of going to your favorite website without having to carry around a computer.
The truth is that most people probably use a combination of all three to access the Internet. An interesting thing to consider though is how often people are using their mobile devices to access the web in situations that you might not consider. 84% of people say that they use their smart phones while they are home. Another 74% of people use their smart phones while waiting in line, and 64% say that they use their smart phone at work. One thing to consider is all the opportunities to let people know about your organization that are being missed by not having a mobile site that a user can easily access.
Has your organization kept up with the times. Since the smart phone has emerged the entire way that people interact with the internet has changed. People no longer have to wait to go home to look up a website that their friend just told them about. Now they can do it on the bus ride home, or right there with their friend standing beside them. We are not a society that is so used to having things as quickly as we want them that even the slightest delay can lead us to forgetting, and just moving on to the next item on our never ending list of things to do. With smart phones and mobile tablets users are now able to get the information that they need when they actually need it. Also because mobile use of the internet has grown so much during the last couple of years, by not having a site that customers can access from their phones, companies are seen as not as legitimate as others.
You might be asking yourself. This is all very interesting information but what does it really have to do with us. How is this really going to effect our organization.
The first way that it effects you is very simple. It effects you!!. Because the use of mobile devices to access the internet has grown so much it is something that can no longer be ignored. If you want to reach every person that you can possibly reach have to be able to meet them where they are at and provide them a site that they can access no matter if they are at home or riding the train to work. When we first spoke about designing your site you mentioned that the profile for most of your donors are middle income people that have a decent amount of technical knowledge. These are the exactly the people that are using their smart phones to access the internet. By providing a site that they can go and get information about your organization and also be able to donate right there on the page you make yourself much more appealing to exactly the type of people that you are looking for. Also people are most likely to look up information when it first crosses their mind. By having a way for people to look up information on your organization you eliminate the risk of a person expressing interest in your services but then forgetting about it by the time they are in front of a computer.
How does having a mobile site actually help you. Again it allows for people to make donations where ever they are and when ever it crosses their minds. Also it allows people who might not have a home computer but have a smart phone or a friend with a phone access to your site and to be able to get the information that they need either for themselves or someone they care about.
Ok so now you might be saying to yourself “ Ok we need a mobile website, but where do we begin”. Here are a few things to keep in mind when thinking about creating your mobile site. Not all mobile phones are the same but their screens are definitely smaller than a tradition PC monitor. So a side has to be designed especially for a mobile user. It is easier to accomplish that task by creating content first for mobile devices and then adding other features to the site that are able to be used by home computers. Also there isn’t as much room for content as with traditional screens so it is very import to give special treatment to content that is most important and you feel is going to be most needed by potential users.
Here are a few quick examples of what you don’t want. You don’t want a site that has no personality to it or has information crammed together. Also do not want links that are hard to use. A lot of people with larger hands have a hard time using mobile devices with small links and so they get frustrated and end up not using them at all. What you want to do is put boxes or easy to use links within spaced out content that allows the user to find what they are looking for easily and quickly.
Here is a few examples of the attributes that you DO want on your mobile site. You want to be able to add value to user so make information easy and quick to find. You want to think of what information is most important and display clearly for the user to find. Also a mix of option content is a good idea. Allow them to download videos or picture if they choose to but don’t make it mandatory because many wireless plans have data restrictions. Also for the links use boxes and make them large so people have an easier time clicking them to move on to the areas that that want to go. Pointing the links to the most sought after material is a great way to keep things clean and assure that the users don’t get lost on the site.
At the end of the day the choice is yours to decide if and what your mobile site is going to be. The trends in the ways that people are going to connect to the Internet show that more and more people are using wireless devices and tablets to get information off the net. I don’t believe that your company can afford to miss out the opportunities that are out there with mobile users. Taking the time to make sure that you have a mobile presence and that is experience is very user friendly is going to become more and more essential for any business or organization. The time has come where the first impression that people will have of your organization will come from your mobile website, and as the time old saying goes “You never get a second chance to make a first impression”
Chris Davis Mobile/Tablet Design Presentation
Why Mobile MattersAnd why YOUR business cant afford to be leftbehind
Why Does It MatterHow websites are accessed by mobile phonescan no longer be ignoredYour site must be created with mobile users inmindPotential donors are likely to use their phones toaccess the web. By not creating a site they canuse you can lose their donation.People are likely to look for help when it firstcrosses their minds.
How Does ItHelp• Allows donations on the go• Helps people find the help that they need• Makes organization easier to find for people without home PC’s
What To Keep In MindSite must be designed for size of mobile phones.It is better to design site for mobile first then addcapabilities for PC usersA smaller area means that the more importantcontent should be given special treatment.Content needs to developed in mind with whatinformation someone on the go is going to needabout the organization.
What YouDon’t Want• No real functionality• Small links that are hard to press on a mobile phone• No info to what the site can really do for you.• No personality about company
What You DO Want• To add value to the user• Mix of different content media that the user can chose from• Clear links that help the user find what they are looking for quickly
It’s Up To YouBy creating mobile site you can meet newcustomers/donors where it is most convenient forthem.Increase in donations and people wanting to takeclasses can justify costBy creating mobile site as a part of new sitedesign you are able to cut time and costCan you afford miss opportunities to reacheveryone possible.
ReferencesDawson, A (Aug 2010). Mobile Web Design: Best Practicesretrieved from http://sixrevisions.com/web-development/mobile-web-design-best-practices/ on March 24, 2012Ma, S (Jan 2011) Designing for the Mobile Web: SpecialConsiderations retrieved fromhttp://www.uxmatters.com/mt/archives/2011/01/designing-for-the-mobile-web-special-considerations.php on March 24, 2012Wroblewski, L (March 2011) Mobile First retrieved fromhttp://www.netmagazine.com/features/mobile-first on March 24,2012Wentworth T (Aug. 2011) Why Mobile Design Should never Be anAfterthought retrieved fromhttp://mashable.com/2011/08/05/mobile-design-priority/ on March24 2012Best and Worst of The Mobile Web (2008) MobiThinking retrievedfrom http://mobithinking.com/white-papers/best-and-worst-of-the-mobile-Web on March 24 2012
Picture ReferencesiPhone: retrieved on March 24, 2012 from:http://printerinkcartridgesblog.printcountry.com/tip-of-the-day/top-smartphones-of-2010-13918.htmlDesktop: retrieved on March 24, 2012 from:http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1153583/Social-websites-harm-childrens-brains-Chilling-warning-parents-neuroscientist.htmlKindle Fire: retrieved on March 24, 2012 from: http://reviews.cnet.com/8301-19736_7-57330571-251/kindle-fire-vs-nook-tablet-how-to-choose/People in Line: retrieved on March 24, 2012 fromhttp://alwayspeeved.blogspot.com/2011/02/people-standing-too-close-to-you-in.htmlPhone at Work: retrieved on March 24, 2012 from http://techtips.salon.com/advantages-accessing-internet-through-cell-phones-3875.htmlBunch Of Phone: retrieved on March 24, 2012 from http://www.droid-life.com/2011/12/02/friday-poll-do-you-usually-buy-insurance-for-your-phones/The Web: retrieved on March 24, 2012 from http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2008/10/ten-years-later/Smiling Face: retrieved on March 24, 2012 fromhttp://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2011/11/happy_people_look_younger.php