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Winning the Next Wave of the Internet: Mobile
Desktops and laptops are no longer the most preferred devices for accessing the Internet. With mobile search queries on Google have risen by 3000 percent in the past three years, web access through mobile devices is set to become more popular in the next two or three years. More and more people are searching for new products, services, discounts, and offers on the Internet through their smartphones. Embracing this change can help your business flourish and grow faster.
Advantages of Focusing on Mobile Internet
Unlike desktop and laptop users, those accessing the Internet through their cell phones invariably focus on locally available products and services. M-commerce is highly localized. Setting up a mobile-centric website can help you target all those individuals who are searching for new products, deals, discounts, and special offers in their cities. Offering a fully functional mobile Internet website and mobile apps to customers is equivalent to having loudspeakers blaring information about your latest product and offerings on every major road in your city throughout the day.
Mobile Internet vs. Old-fashioned Internet
A mobile website, unlike a traditional website, is designed to provide maximum information to the user in the shortest possible time. Those using smartphones cannot be expected to sift through unnecessary information. A simple, functional, and utilitarian mobile website will deliver essential details of your product and services without delays or hassles. "Call Us" and "Find Us" links can help convert the web surfer into a potential customer in a span of a few minutes. The latter link can help those with GPS-enabled smartphones locate your business. Creating a cell-phones-only version of your existing website can help expand your web presence. Once you are certain of the advantages of targeting mobile web surfers, you can setup a standalone mobile website.
Your mobile website will help you implement hyper-local marketing strategies and campaigns. You can offer discounts on products and accessories related to cell phones to the first hundred subscribers of your site's text messaging service. This type of marketing campaign will:
Spread the word about your mobile site
Please existing customers who own smartphones
Attract new customers
Create a positive buzz around your business
Costs and Risks Associated with Mobile Internet
A badly designed mobile website can severely affect the popularity of your business. In fact, surveys have shown that customers are less likely to recommend businesses with poorly designed websites for cellphones.
It is advisable to employ professional web designers when setting up a mobile website to target the m-commerce segment. There are also extra costs associated with set up and maintenance of a mobile site. Be aware that you will also have to spend time on devising and implementing search engine optimization strategies as well.
It is imperative to purchase antivirus and computer security applications for the website designed for smartphones and cell phones. Giving hackers access to the mobile numbers of all your m-commerce customers can be devastating for your business.
Despite associated risks, mobile Internet is too lucrative an opportunity to ignore. Very few small businesses have woken up to the advantages of focusing on m-commerce. Adopting a holistic approach towards mobile Internet and including those who use smartphones to surf the web in your web strategy will prove to be very beneficial for your small business.