What Customers Want Most From Small Business Mobile Websites

Nearly half of U.S. consumers use smartphones. In fact, among young adults (18 to 29) and adults in households with incomes of over $75,000, smartphone use is even higher (66% and 68%, respectively).

In a July 2012 study, two independent research firms surveyed more than 1,000 U.S. adult smartphone users. The findings are not surprising: smartphone owners expect websites to be optimized for their smartphones.

Key takeaways from the study

There’s much insight in the study for small business owners. If you’re still trying to decide whether you should optimize your small business website for mobile, you should be aware of the following important results from the study:

1. Mobile-friendly sites are important. 72 percent of mobile users said that mobile-friendly sites were important to them, but nearly all (96%) had encountered sites that were not mobile-friendly.

2. Want loyal customers? Make it easier for them to engage with your business. 74 percent of mobile users were more likely to revisit mobile-friendly sites.

3. Want more customers? Make sure your site is mobile-friendly. 61 percent of mobile users will NOT buy from a site that isn’t mobile-friendly. More importantly, a majority of users (67%) are more likely to buy or convert after a visit to a mobile-friendly site. In fact, 79% of smartphone users who don’t like what they find on one site will search for another site.

4. If your site isn’t mobile-friendly – you’re hurting your brand. 48 percent of mobile users said that a frustrating experience on a site using their smartphone would hurt their perception of their brand. In fact, 52 percent of smartphone users said that they would use a business less often – even if they like that business – if the site isn’t mobile friendly. Not surprisingly, nearly half of smartphone users said that a poorly working mobile site made them feel like the company didn’t care about their business.

What users want from mobile sites

The study offers important tips on what users want from mobile-friendly sites.

A majority of users want to be able to: easily find the operating hours for the business (76%), the phone number for the business (61%), and the ability to send an email (54%).

Smartphone users expect mobile sites to load in under five seconds, according to the survey findings. But just like with regular website loading times, faster is always better. In fact, every second counts. Nearly half of consumers expect a webpage to load in 2 seconds or less.

Among other things, smartphone users want to be able to find more information with just one or two clicks (78%), search the site (78%), want a clean and efficient site (74%), prefer big, friendly site buttons (69%), want short forms (73%), and want the option to view the non-mobile site (74%).

Have you optimized your website for mobile yet? Do you have any questions that we or other users can answer about mobile? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below.