Mobile is everywhere and whether we like it or not, it is here to stay and businesses will need to embrace the technology to maintain a competitive advantage. With over half of American adults using a smartphone, (according to Pew Internet) you need to care about your smartphone customers. Why? Mobile users have expectations when accessing a website from their phones and if those expectations are not met, over 40% have turned to a competitor’s site after a bad mobile experience. Desktop websites were not designed with smartphones in mind. In this day and age with information available at our fingertips, we expect immediate results with instant gratification and 58% expect mobile sites to load as quickly as, or faster than, desktop sites. If your existing or potential customers find themselves waiting for your site to load they may choose to do business elsewhere. Even if your desktop site loads quickly on a mobile device, do your visitors have to “pinch and zoom” to find your phone number or get directions? Considerations on How Mobile Affects Your… Reputation. As much as mobile is everywhere, do you know how it is affecting your business? Non-mobile optimized websites are hurting your reputation, as almost half of smartphone users say they feel frustrated and annoyed when a site is not mobile friendly. Also, 48% say that if a site didn’t work well on a smartphone, that the company did not care about their mobile customers. A majority of businesses cannot afford to turn away existing or potential customers and the opportunity to boost sales. Engagement. Are you communicating with your customers in their language and encouraging engagement? A bad mobile experience does not allow for engagement and when they are accessing your website on their phones they have a specific need and are in “take action” mode; they want to call or visit your business. Research indicates that 67% say that they are more likely to buy a site’s product or service, if they visit a mobile friendly website. Social Media. Have you considered what happens when you post on Social Media platforms with a link to read a blog post or buy a product or service? When that user is on a mobile device and clicks through to the site, if it is not mobile optimized you have lost opportunity to increase exposure and sales especially on Facebook and Twitter where two out of three of your customer base are accessing those platforms on mobile devices. Email. Can your emails be read easily on mobile devices? Are the links in your email marketing connecting to mobile optimized information? With email open rates at an all time high at 51% on average, are your emails being effective when they are opened? It is important to note that custom design and setup for a majority of the mobile websites are as easy as 1-2-3 to implement and are more cost effective than you may realize. As you can see everything evolves around a mobile web presence and if you implement just one mobile strategy, start with a mobile optimized website that adheres to Google’s best practices. Mobilize today and acknowledge your mobile customers!
Having a huge number of Facebook Likes and an equally burgeoning email subscriber base doesn’t always translate to brand success in the long term. Imagine that your online business seems to be going well until you notice #yourcompanysucks trending on Twitter. This hashtag starts a chain reaction of negative reviews and general catcalling and you’re suddenly wondering where your entire campaign went wrong. The identity you’ve been trying to valiantly to portray to your audience isn’t always the one that they actually perceive. Brands seeking to establish a long-term relationship with their social media and email customers should focus on user experience, ensuring that the entire experience is as easy, smooth and most importantly as social as possible. Passwords frustrate users Anyone who spends any amount of time online has been witnesses to various security breaches, hacks and account theft... and mostly they are as a result of having an insecure password that is either common or easy to guess. This is the primary reason most of the major brand websites have attempting to encourage their customers into concocting a strong password that is considerably tougher to guess. Restrictions like “a minimum of x numbers, special characters or upper and lower case letters” are now common and the minimum password length gets greater as time goes by. This policy only forces users to come up with passwords that are too long or convoluted and studies show that up to seven out of every ten consumers have admitted that they have forgotten a password because of their complexity. Additionally, security questions, activation by phone and other similar security methods only increase the login/registration frustration and can sometimes even make the user change their mind about registering at all. Make it easy on the customer You should only require the information that is completely necessary to create an account and nothing more. If there aren’t any personally sensitive aspects such as credit card information stored on the account, then don’t bother adding extra levels of security and let your customers pick a password they are comfortable with. Allow users to log in through other accounts like Facebook and Twitter with a single button and if you own multiple websites, as making one account and session work for all of them can save them considerable time and frustration. Encourage user engagement & interaction Netizens are nearly twice as likely to buy something if they have seen a friend recommend it on a prominent social network. A user without a proper way to provide feedback or to share their thoughts about your brand will feel less attracted to it, resulting in less user engagement and proportionately fewer conversions. Every product or page or element that you think someone might even remotely be interested in sharing should have a prominent share button. A comment section or perhaps even a forum can be a launching point to directly interact with your consumers as well as giving them a way to share their experiences with your brand. It’s all about your customers By focusing on the relationship with each customer separately you will ensure that any two given users will not obtain the same experience on your social media or email presence, as they are perceiving that they are having it tailored to their needs, preferences and usage history. Failing to remember their payment information or giving them a generic list of products that they might or might not be interested into will only reduce the loyalty of your customers. If your customer base accepts it, record data of their activities on your online presences that will be used to improve their experience. Where legal, aspects such as product filters and payment information should be remembered through cookies so that your users will immediately feel comfortable on your sites even if they don’t log in first. In any relationship you must ensure that the other party is having a good time, otherwise trouble is brewing. When it comes to relating to your social media and email marketing customer, that’s the only way to make sure that the relationship with your consumer is a long and fruitful one!
If you were a member of a bilingual society and called upon to do a presentation in front of an audience whose native tongue was 15% English but 85% German, what would be the logical language to present in? It would seem clear that the presentation should be done in German. Since that is the case, why does your brand insist in writing its emails in the American English form which is emphatically not the language of 85% of the web’s English speakers? Out of the two billion people who live in nations where English is an official primary language, barely 300 million live in the United States. If your brand markets internationally (and most do) you are not only writing for an audience which resides between Maine and California, but for a prospect who may live in Canada, Australia, Britain, India, South Africa, The Philippines or more than fifty other nations. Although the population of these countries speak English, it is not the American English you have been brought up with. They speak the British English established in their colonial past, and it is a significantly different language than that spoken in modern day New York or Los Angeles. Here are just a few examples: Anorak - Parka Flyover - Overpass Articulated Lorry - An 18 wheeler truck Football - Soccer Aubergine - Eggplant Gammon - Ham Bangers - Sausages Hooter - Nose Biro - Ball point pen Lay-by - Roadside rest area Bonnet - Car hood Lift - Elevator Boot - Car trunk Loo - Toilet Caravan - Trailer or Motor Home Mac - Raincoat Chemist - Drug store Nought - The number zero Chuffed - Happy Petrol - Gasoline Courgettes - Zucchini Pram - Baby buggy Crisps - Potato chips Serviette - Table napkin Custom - Patronage Stone – A person’s weight in 14 pound increments Dual Carriageway - Divided highway Swede – Turnip Estate Car - Station wagon Tyre - Tire Fag - Cigarette Wellies - Rubber boots Faggot - A sausage-like meat Wing – Car fender Flat - Apartment Zed - The letter \"Z\" Identical terms can also have different meanings. If an American invites you over for tea, it’s for a hot beverage. However, a British speaker will serve you a full evening meal. An American pudding is a spoonable flavored cream, but a British pudding is everything from cake to pastries to ice cream. There are variants everywhere: Canadians, for example, tend to speak a more Americanized English, but steadfastly insist on inserting those British u’s inbetween the o’s and r’s, as in \"honour the colour of your neighbour.\" Indians tend to use colonialisms such as “do the needful” which have passed away in most modern English speaking countries. Australians have specific terms such as “fair dinkum” which are found nowhere else. The variants even extend to the way sums are written: USA: $1,234,567,890.12 Continental Europe: 1.234.567.890,12$ India: $1,23,45,67,891.12 In most British speaking countries a billion is what Americans call a trillion. Thus if your email refers to Carlos Slim as the world’s richest man with $53.5 billion, a non-American audience might interpret that as an amount greater than the GDP of North America and Europe combined! As there is no universal English, email marketers are well advised to craft their targeted messages in the specific type of English which is practiced by their audience. Your list’s statistical data has to include your customers’ nationalities, thus there is no more excuse than to supply a recipe for a treacle glazed, rasher wrapped hand of pork with capsicum, silver beet and sultana forcemeat to an American audience as there is to provide the same molasses glazed, bacon wrapped pork shoulder with red pepper, swiss chard and raisin stuffing recipe to your prospects in New Zealand, Ireland, Kenya, Hong Kong, Pakistan, Singapore, Jamaica…