When executives and marketing heads are reluctant to talk about mobile optimization, they have good reason. Mobile improvements are an expensive undertaking and time consuming to boot. To fully accommodate mobile devices is no easy task — some websites require a complete overhaul, ripping out the guts and inserting a new foundation for a brand's digital presence. And when the numbers appear positive at first glance, leadership can be reluctant to rock the boat. Why fix something if it isn't broken? But that's the challenge of digital marketing: No campaign is ever truly fixed. Incremental strides and improvements can push marketing strategies toward unprecedented returns on investment and ultimately keep the brand moving forward. Given how mobile has deepened its roots in the daily lives of consumers, mobile optimization isn't merely a way to refine campaign results. In 2015, it's a critical step toward continued relevance with your audience. But that's not the only reason businesses should embrace mobile immediately.
Online Commerce Is Shifting Toward Mobile
Marketing Land notes that mobile screen time is increasing while traditional desktop activity declines. Mobile shopping apps are getting smarter and more functional, mobile security — and security fears — have progressed tremendously in recent years and mobile-specific advertising has become smarter and more productive. All of these factors conspire to create an online commercial market that exists on mobile more than ever.
Mobile usage is expected to increase steadily in the coming years, and device production continues unabated. As integral a role as smartphones and tablets play with commerce in 2015, the relationship will be even more pronounced by 2017.
Mobile Is a Portal to Greater Engagement
Mobile devices are a source of much-needed engagement with online shoppers, and the possibilities have been blown wide open. In addition to the increased accessibility that comes with running a mobile-optimized site, brands can engage with their audiences through mobile-savvy social media platforms and mobile apps. Technology allows businesses to cultivate a comprehensive brand experience that crosses numerous media. Mobile is a critical building block in that experience.
Mobile Traffic Doesn't Give Second Chances
Mobile consumers are impatient — particularly, as IBM Insights on Business notes, if your target audience trends young. When consumers visit a website that hasn't been optimized for their mobile devices, the Huffington Post notes that almost one-third of them will leave the site. If your website is experiencing high bounce rates, there's a good chance a lack of optimization is why. Each time, you're bleeding potential clients and sales.
The Numbers Are Clear: Mobile Pays Off
Mobile isn't an unknown channel anymore. As noted by the Huffington Post, we know that 80 percent of mobile purchases are impulse driven — a huge opportunity for brands, and one capitalized upon by producing a quality mobile experience. Mobile optimization provides an almost-universal increase in conversions and decrease in bounce rates. The extra revenue that follows will offset some of the expenses of optimizing for mobile. If you're struggling to get leadership on board, be sure to emphasize this financial opportunity.
While intimidating and resource intensive, optimizing for mobile doesn't have to be confounding. Marketers have learned how to implement this strategy with ease and with assurances of better online performance. Others have cleared the path — now your business needs to follow their lead.