Website Optimization in the Age of Mobile

By Michael FosterAugust 4, 2015

You may have heard the stories about improving conversions, higher sales rates and better ROI from paid media campaigns. You may have heard people boast that they see a dramatic increase in sales and lower abandoned shopping cart rates. And you may have heard of new technologies and strategies driving performance higher and helping e-commerce business grow. But is it true?

In reality, a lot of marketers are seeing plummeting performance and ROI. There are several reasons for this. The biggest, though, is the switch to mobile. More mobile browsing and content consumption combined with lower mobile sales rates mean worsening sales to visitor ratios. It’s a well-known secret in the industry and a real problem: A lot of people abandon shopping carts on mobile, even if they are really interested and motivated to buy.

At the same time, mobile commerce is exploding, with mCommerce rising 42 percent annually over a four-year period, according to PwC. This was the conclusion of a survey that spanned 19 countries and 19,000 online interviews, so the number is likely to resemble reality at least a little.

Here’s the problem: Much of that growth is concentrated in mobile-first or mobile-only services, such as Uber and Airbnb. They’re also largely concentrated in early mobile adopters who have big brand recognition and a wide distribution network. It’s easy for Amazon and eBay to get their apps installed, and once the app is there, it’s easier to buy repeatedly on a mobile device.

Specialist e-commerce retailers are struggling, though. They will be more limited to mobile sales from everyone but their most hardcore repeat customers. This means they need to create apps and make seamless, easy-to-use mobile websites that don’t frustrate shoppers.

They also need to make sure their desktop sites get easier to use because a lot of people are still comparison shopping and jumping from mobile devices to get info and desktops to complete the sale. Thus, they need to optimize their websites to be easy and to incorporate whatever data you get from your mobile traffic.

In other words, website optimization in the age of mobile is a new animal, and it depends on more data and fewer cookies.

At this year’s LeadsCon New York, HubSpot Partner Program Manager Luke Summerfield will kick off a discussion about improving site load times, moving beyond traditional website design and improving website performance based on data. Looking holistically at design and data, Summerfield will discuss how a lot of the former best practices in traditional website design no longer work and are actually wasting people's time, money and opportunity. With a focus on designing sites for growth and sales, marketers can drive performance and make an experience that makes customers happy and eager to come back. That’s the first step in making a site that works and drives sales in an age of mobile.

Click here to register for LeadsCon, and hear practical tips from Luke on how to improve your own web and mobile presence. 

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