Mobile websites and sites that can be seen on a mobile device are not the same thing. Although mobile devices can display any website, that doesn’t mean all sites will look good on a mobile device.
If you are a mobile surfer yourself, you know how frustrating it is to look at some sites that require you to pinch and zoom all over the screen. The text is too small, the menus don’t display well, the buttons are too close together, and worst of all, you can’t find a way to contact anyone on the page for help.
If this is the case, the page is not mobile friendly. The way to fix it is by installing a responsive design into your website or buying a low budget app from the internet.
Responsive design vs. mobile website: What’s the difference?
A mobile website is simply a version of your private investigations website your customers can view on a mobile device. This site might look different than your regular company page. Some apps allow you to create your very own mobile page–for a fee. Often, these apps are clumsy and don’t allow you full access to your pages. Additionally, the styles many times come out looking like a stitched layout made in a Lego factory. They are branded by the native app and, more often than not, require you to have a subdomain like mobile.companyname.com or m.companyname.com—which ultimately hurts your SEO score.
A responsive design is a version of your website that looks just like your current pages. Best of all, the pages don’t need to have third party applications or subdomains. The sites are automatically formulated in your browser window and can adapt to any browser setting.
To see what I mean by this, shrink your browser from full screen to an area the size of a smartphone screen and click on this link (open in new window) or visit CI Agency, a West Palm Beach Private Investigator website, you’ll see what a responsive website looks like. You’ll notice that no matter how small you make the browser area, Investigator Marketing is coded in a way that it will respond to the size and automatically adjust the layout depending on the size of your browser window. The page continues to be clearly readable, regardless of the screen size. Because it can “respond” to the sizes, this type of coding style is called “responsive layout”— which is ultimately very mobile friendly.
Why should my private investigator website be mobile friendly?
The main reason? To get more work. Think about it: When a user is browsing the Internet at home, everything on the page is organized and easy to read. But when they’re on the move, in distress, and in need of immediate assistance, they don’t have time to pinch and zoom across the page or search for the information they need.
Mobile visitors will opt for the website that best fits their needs right there and then. Everyone is open to the market – they don’t have preferences.
In our profession, convenience is king. Whether it be an attorney who just discovered he needs to serve papers immediately, an insurance adjuster who just discovered her claimant is leaving town, or a person who just discovered his partner is cheating, your clients need assistance fast. If they’re at home, you’re in luck. If they’re out and about, do you honestly think they’ll have the time and patience to say, “I’ll just wait until I get back to a computer to see if they’re the investigators I need?”
Is making my private investigations website mobile-friendly worth it?
In 2012, Google conducted an independent survey called “What Users Want Most From Mobile Sites Today.” They found that 67 percent of users surveyed would be more likely to purchase a product or service from a business with a mobile-friendly website and that 61 percent of users said they’d leave a site that’s not optimized for mobile. Check out these numbers:
- 28% of Internet usage comes from a mobile phone.
- Mobile Internet usage is projected to overtake desktop Internet usage by 2014. (Source: Microsoft Tag)
- 46% of consumers are unlikely to return to a site if it didn’t work properly during their last visit. (Source: Gomez)
- 91% of smartphone users have their phone within arm’s reach 24/7 – (Morgan Stanley, 2012)
- 70% of all mobile searches result in action within 1 hour. 70% of online searches result in action in one month. (Mobile Marketer, 2012)
- 9 out of 10 mobile searches lead to action, over half leading to purchase. (Search Engine Land, 2012)
- 61% of local searches on a mobile phone result in a phone call. (Google, 2012)
- There were a total of $241 billion mobile transactions in 2011.
If you optimize for mobile devices, this means that your private investigations company can tap into the 28% of traffic that is surfing the Internet on the move. Most of the mobile surfers are looking for services that they need right now. And often, if the website is appealing and informative and the page is easy to read and access, they will click on the call button.
How do you get a mobile website?
If you’re looking for a mobile website, make sure that you don’t purchase a service from an app that claims they can turn your current website into a mobile page. More often than not, the app will copy and paste a lot of the information into a cookie cutter theme that sends out the wrong message about your professionalism and attention to detail.
At a minimum, your page needs to contain the basics: information about your company, who you are, what you do, and how you do it. It needs to be easily navigated from point A to Point B without hiccups. Perhaps most important of all: your page needs to match your company’s brand.
If you need help determining whether your website is mobile friendly, or if you want to move forward with creating a mobile friendly version of your site, contact a professional web designer and coder who can make your site look great on a computer screen or a mobile device…so people on the move can find you quickly and easily.
Ruben Roel is founder of InvestigatorMarketing.com, a firm that specializes in marketing and web development for private investigators.