Lessons from an Audit of the Largest Mobile Sites

Audit of the Largest Mobile Sites

There is nothing worse than having a client struggle to purchase via their mobile app. Perhaps the app or page loads too slow, it takes too long to find what they are looking for, maybe they can’t find what they are looking for, and perhaps the checkout process is too long. Consumers have short attention spans, and if they cannot make their purchases as quickly as they like, they will abandon their cart and go elsewhere for the product they want. You need to perform Mobile Optimization.

One of the biggest fears for any business is to lose mobile sales. We have watched mobile shopping increase dramatically in the last decade, and it will increase as we go forward. When we fail to make the mobile sites work at their absolute best, we will lose money. For retail sites, just one second too long in loading a page can have a profound effect. How intense? How about an astonishing 20% loss in conversion. That’s losing one in five people every time someone attempts to load your page.

Fortunately, there is information we can learn from that came out of an audit of mobile shopping sites in Canada. One hundred websites were selected and found that similar issues arose time and time again across all the websites. What was most shocking is that the problem is not just in Canada. It is affecting retailers and businesses everywhere.

Check Your Mobile Site Speed

Frequent checkups are a must, and fortunately, there are free options to help you ensure that your mobile site is working at its best. Test My Site is one such option, and its focus is to help you improve your website as best as possible. While many will think these solutions are generic, the test sites will customize the answers to your specific needs.  Not only will it test your site speed, but it can also tell you how you compare to your competitors and how your speed is affecting your bottom dollar. Knowing where you stand with your competitors is a valuable tool for improving your site and becoming a stronger competitor. The test sites also provide you with how these issues are affecting your bottom dollar will allow you to make better choices and work harder to provide a better service.

Reduce Page Weight

Reducing your page weight is crucial. We understand you want to give them as much as possible, but many websites are too heavy when it comes to mobile usage. On average, your page weight should be 1,000 kb or less. If you find that you are over, don’t stress out too much. Many other websites are also heavy on each page and require adjusting. On a global scale, almost 80% of websites run over 1,000 kb per page. Another 53% are over 2,000 kb, and over 20% are running with over 4,000 kb on a page. Given these numbers, you can easily make some adjustments and outperform your competitors quickly, giving you an upper hand in the market.

One way to reduce page weight is to remove photo carousels. Those are great for a web page being accessed using a personal computer, but it’s unnecessary when it comes to your mobile page. Most consumers don’t ever see beyond the first photo because they are busy scrolling and looking for what they want. The difference between a shopper on a mobile device and one on a laptop is the latter tend to be more leisurely. Your mobile site should be catering to someone who knows what they want, and you can help them get it quick. Simplify and only include pictures that are necessary for the sale.

Improve Site Search Capability

Moving your search box to just above the fold on the mobile site will give them the option to search for what they want immediately. From a usability standpoint, having to look for the search box is frustrating. Make sure autocorrect steps in and corrects any typos in the search box. Typos are more likely to happen on a mobile device than a laptop because smaller screens mean smaller buttons. If you don’t force autocorrect, you could lose someone who is struggling to find something that they misspelled. You want to make their shopping experience as easy as possible, and taking these essential steps will save you a ton of time and energy.

Simplify the Checkout Process

Allowing customers to check out as a guest rather than forcing them to create a new account is a good start. While you want brand loyalty, you can make the quick buy a benefit to you. Include a discount on their next purchase if they create an account within seven days of their purchase.  Including payment options like Google Pay or PayPal will help simplify the sale on their end. Many people don’t want to have to drag out the wallet, look for their credit card, and input all the essential information. Any method to make purchases in as few clicks as possible will be a big bonus for you.

Many companies used the information from the audit to improve their sales through their mobile sites. In some cases, they found that they could reduce their bounce rate by almost 5% if they decreased their page load speed. Other companies who reduced page weight and simplified forms and checkout processes saw an immediate increase in business. Even though people shop on their mobile devices so much, people still talk about their shopping experiences with one another. If you gain a reputation for having an easy process, people will spread the word, and you can easily see a near 20% improvement within just a month. There is no time like the present to check your mobile site and ensure that it is working at optimum speed. Your bottom dollar will thank you.

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