Mobile shopping is quickly becoming a popular way to shop online. Is your eCommerce site ready to make the most of this trend? We've got 11 simple changes you can make to your website to guarantee that it is.
In a survey by MasterCard, 46% of respondents in the Asia Pacific region said they’d made a purchase on their mobile phone within the last three months. Of these, 49.5% chose ‘convenience’ as the motivating factor to shop using a mobile device.
Are you optimized for mobile?
If it’s convenience that customers are looking for, be sure that your eCommerce site is giving it to them by optimizing it for mobile. When mobile sites are difficult to navigate, it’s highly likely that a customer will click out of them, leaving you with an abandoned cart and loss of potential revenue.
So, is your mobile eCommerce site ready for all the action? The design experts at TradeGecko have put together a list of 11 simple ways to optimize your mobile site so that it provides the best eCommerce experience possible and drives sales for your business.
-Consider using an m-site format, rather than responsive.
What does this mean in real terms? An m-site format is specifically designed for mobile:
While a responsive site is simply your desktop site:
that shrinks down to fit the screen size - and in this case, the mobile phone screen:
If your responsive site gets confusing, or requires people to zoom in on their phones, customers may lose interest. M-sites are usually clearer and easier to navigate, as they are specifically designed for these devices.
-Optimize your site for speed.
Let's admit it, humans are an impatient bunch, and even more so on a mobile device. How quickly your page loads can be the difference between a sale and a passing click. You can use online tools such as GTmetrix to analyze the speed of your site.
-Decide who your mobile audience is.
This audience may be different from your desktop audience in several different ways: who they are, how long they're willing to spend on your site, what time they're using the site and what they're looking for. You can use analytics tools such as Google Analytics or Mixpanel to define customer types and figure out exactly who you’re targeting.
-Speaking of your audience, think about what types of devices they will be on.
Is most of your traffic coming from customers with high feature phones or more simple ones? This will affect what kind of experience they will have. Not everyone will be browsing on the latest model of smartphone, and it’s essential to keep those customers in mind when designing your site.
-Condense and simplify your content.
When it comes to mobile sites, the Content King has to be dethroned. As beautiful as all your site copy is - simplify it for mobile, while keeping it relevant to your audience.
Not all people visiting your site will be on 3G or a faster connection, so it’s important for your images to load quickly and easy. Make them as small as possible, and use formats that don’t take up too much space.
-Use clear product images and give multiple views.
Multiple views and excellent images give customers more confidence in their purchase decision when they’re shopping on mobile. If it’s a pair of pants, show them the front, the back and the side. Give them pictures that showcase your product as if they’re seeing it person. In the same line, make sure your images are clear.
Source: JJ Suspenders
Blurred or pixelated images can make people wonder why they're blurry or what you’re trying to hide.
-Make your search box easy to find.
Search is used more often than any other area of the site to find product. Let’s keep things non-meta and make sure your customers don’t end up searching for the search button. An easy solution is to place it directly below your brand header.
-Rethink using a hamburger menu.
A hamburger menu is that little box with three lines that you see in the top corner of mobile sites. Don’t know what I’m talking about? Not surprising - most people don’t notice this menu in the corner, let alone bother to click on it and see what’s inside. This means they’ll miss out on a whole lot of options that you’ve put in there. Lay it out to be clicked on, don’t hide it behind condensed menus.
-Optimize your forms and keyboards for mobile use.
If your customers have to enter any information into a form or your site, make sure that it attracts the eye and is convenient for the customer to touch or click on. If they have to enter data, make it so that an appropriate keyboard shows up. For example, if you want a phone number, design it so that the numbers-only keyboard pops up, rather than the full one.
-Make check out easy.
Reduce barriers to checking out. How easy is payment when customers are ready to check out? Does a customer have to log in to complete check out - something which can be much more tedious on mobile than on desktop? Do they have to use a credit card, or can they just sign in to paypal and complete the purchase quickly? Make it easy for them to get through your payment process.
When in doubt, keep things simple
Most of these tips are all about making things easy. And with good cause. When a customer is online shopping with a phone in hand, you want things to be as simple as possible.
Make it so that when a customer passes by that cute dress in the store window, she’ll hardly notice it- she’ll have already found a similar dress on your mobile site!