I just took a random sample of 5 dealership websites we host, opened analytics on those sites, and studied the percentage of visitors that came by way of mobile device. Averaging those 5 sites I discovered:
Mobile traffic accounts for 53% of website visitors!
I mean it makes sense, right? We always have our phones on us. At lunch, sitting in traffic, at our kids practice, at work, etc. I would venture to say that the customers you service when asked if they have Internet simply say, “Yes. On my phone.” Many probably don’t even have a desktop computer with Internet at their homes. Those that do probably even prefer their phones because their home Internet is too slow.
A Focus on Mobile
We’ve noticed this trend over the past 9 months and have made efforts to begin improving the mobile experience for website visitors.
Here are my takeaways for creating a better mobile website:
1. Keep the mobile site on your domain
There are three ways to host a mobile website;
A. on a mobile url (mobile.webaddress.com)
B. on the main url (webaddress.com/mobile)
C. or through responsive websites (webaddress.com)
Ideally B and C are the best options. We use B so that we can fully customize the main site and customize the mobile site as well. It gives us more design choices than a responsive site would allow for. Option A is now the outdated method. If you have option A through our websites please let me know and we can get you bumped to the top of the conversion list.
2. Make desktop pages auto redirect to their corresponding mobile page
A bit more technical but let’s just say you are looking at search results and it gives you the desktop URL for a vehicle. When you click the link it will redirect to the mobile version of the VDP instead of a generic redirect to your mobile site homepage. It gives you the content you were searching for. Google loves this!
3. Amp up the design style and overall mobile experience
Site design is crucial for mobile! You want easy navigation and less clicks. You want phone and directions easily accessible along with other bits of info like hours of operation and social links. Sites need to be designed as if the user has 5-10 seconds to get what they need.
4. Increase lead gen opportunities
What if 53% of your visitors couldn’t fill out a form to ask you a question? Or what if the form was so mobile UN-friendly that they decided to just move on? We are continuing to work on this ourselves. Online forms need to be everywhere on the site and they need to be easy to complete. Simple as that.
5. Making credit applications easy to complete
I’ll admit my thinking prior to this conversion was “Why would anyone fill out an app on their phone? That’s slow and hard.” Once we had that “ah-ha” moment regarding how people are accessing the websites and how their phone might be their ONLY means to fill out an app it changed my whole mindset. The question then began, “How do I make our app the easiest possible app to complete on a phone?”. We did this a few ways, read below to see how.
Comparing with some competitors
You can see that our credit application will let you know what field you are on (no big zoom in) and for fields that require numbers you are given the number pad for quicker completion and easier use!
Overall Design and Experience
Knowing that over half of your customers are viewing your mobile website we felt they needed just as much TLC as your main website. We are now able to offer very custom designs and color choices for your mobile site. We want your customers to have the same shopping experience as they would from their PCs. As you can see our designs offer banner images and logo integrations. There are also custom color choices to match your main site. Some competitors (seen on the right) provide the same exact mobile design to all of their customers. Remember, 50% of your customers will experience your website this way.