A recent survey conducted by HubShout revealed that 78 per cent of mobile users found new businesses on their phones and tablets.
The news gives small businesses with an online presence a confidence boost. With a solid SEO campaign and well designed website, it is possible for small businesses to compete with large corporations.
But the survey was also useful with providing insights as to what mobile customers expect from a website they visit.
Essentially, they want easy access to relevant information and to navigate the site in the least number of clicks and scrolls.
It is not just information that is important to mobile users, but how easily it is to find it on a website.
Search engine users typically use mobile devices to research information on product prices, opening hours, services, inspiration and event times.
Contact information and business hours were top of the list and should be predominantly displayed or located in a logical part of the website.
Other relevant information mobile users find the most important is:
• Business hours/show times
• phone number (preferably click to call)
• address with directions on foot, driving and public transport
• menu of products and services
• product images
• social media profile links
• fast load times
The priority for mobile users then, is to have immediate access to information that is most important to them, and a web design that is easy to navigate to secondary information.
The importance of information architecture on a website
Information architecture is the technical term used to describe the navigational layout of a website.
A whopping 93% of participants in the HubShout survey indicated they prefer web designs that enable them to navigate the site with few swipes of the finger and the least number of clicks.
The emphasis for mobile sites then is to include small amounts of text, drop down menus and a one click-to-call functionality.
Ill-fitting text on the other hand is a turn-off. If users cannot click in links or have to pinch, squeeze or zoom to read content, it impedes the user-experience.
The user-interface should avoid unnecessary content. Too much information to scroll through makes it more difficult to find relevant information and can leave visitors frustrated.
A poorly designed website that does not provide easy access to the most crucial customer information can lose small businesses customers. It is therefore in your best interests to design your website with mobile customers in mind.