Q. I can see my website on my phone so does that mean that it is already mobile-friendly?

A. Not necessarily as most sites will show up on a Smartphone. However, unless they have been especially designed with mobile in mind they won’t provide a very good user experience for your customers and visitors to your website. A truly mobile-friendly site is specifically tailored to the needs of mobile users and for the capabilities of mobile devices. See our Mobile Web Design checklist on page 17.

Q. My customers are generally at the more mature end of the market so I don’t think that they will bother using a Smartphone to visit my site. Surely a mobile site just appeals to teenagers?
A. That is not the case at all. 9 out 10 phones sold are Smartphones. As current contracts are running out and people are renewing their phones, it is highly likely that they will be getting a Smartphone. As an experiment, ask your friends and family what kind of phone they have. If they don’t have a Smartphone at the moment, no doubt they will tell you that they will be getting one soon.

Q. We got somebody to create an app for our company website. Is that the same thing?
A. That’s great, as mobile apps can be an important part of your mobile marketing strategy, but they are not a replacement for a mobile friendly website. The reason is, apps are platform specific, which means that they are only compatible with the specific mobile the customer used to download the app. For example, a customer would not be able to see the app if it was designed to be downloaded from iTunes to use on an iPhone and they were using an Android phone. A mobile site however will work on any mobile device with a browser. And unlike an app, which takes a lot of work to update, it is much easier, quicker and cheaper to update content and information on a mobile site.

Q. I can’t really afford a mobile site at the moment. Can it wait?
A. Yes, it can wait….but only if you are willing to risk missing out on a lot of business. It won’t be long before more people are accessing the internet from mobile devices than from desktop computers.

Q. How can I be sure that a mobile site will help my business?
A. This is a good question and it’s understandable that you would like to know for certain if a mobile site really is going to drive customers to your business. The statistics and reasons why you should invest in a mobile site stress the urgency to get yours up and running as soon as you can. However, to put your mind at rest and to prove beyond doubt that this is an investment that you need to make as soon as possible, you can experiment with a basic mobile site and different content. That would allow you to assess the performance of the site and will be a perfect learning curve for deciding what information and features you want when you build a full mobile site.

Q. How much profit will I make from my mobile site?
A. As you would expect, return on investment obviously differs from site to site. The best way to view your return on investment is to view your site from this angle: You will be providing users on your website with an additional and convenient way for them to view your content. It will be a more pleasurable experience and as a result, they will be more inclined to continue to visit your site and tell their friends about it. Then, as mobile usage increases, so will your user base and revenue. This will especially be the case if your competitors haven’t made the investment to go mobile. However, if they have, it is even more urgent that you get your mobile site up and running.

If you have any more questions or want more advice on setting up a mobile site for your business, you can find our details on page 3 of this magazine.