Mountain View, CA—Just as the holiday selling season begins to ramp up, online titan Google is helping retailers create and maintain mobile websites to increase a retailer’s share of online shopping dollars via mobile commerce, or m-commerce. Google Mobile (Go Mo) is a new program that was recently launched to do just that.
“A proper mobile site that works for users is really the first step . . . before even marketing,” said Jesse Haines, group marketing manager of Google Mobile Ads, in an interview with VentureBeat.
Once a retailer has an effective online presence with a website, it’s time to go a step further and create a mobile version of that site that is “smartphone friendly.” Just because you can see your desktop site on a mobile phone doesn’t mean it’s mobile friendly. On smartphones, a retailer’s “normal” website can cause frustration with potential buyers researching products from their phones, whose small screens and the ensuing pinching and zooming can cost repeat visitors. Mobile websites, however, are developed specifically to conform to the small screen of a mobile device, taking into account its limited flash content and avoiding pinching and zooming to navigate the site.
Now, Go Mo is offering retailers resources on the importance of creating such a mobile website, and retailers can see what their current sites look like to mobile consumers as well as get a report on what’s working and what they can do better. They can also view examples of great mobile sites, read case studies and, most important, access a directory where they can explore a list of mobile website developers and connect with the right developer to help them go mobile.
Google research indicates that a whopping 61% of visitors to a non-mobile site are unlikely to return. However, consumer interaction increases by 85% when a mobile website is available, potentially increasing any retailer’s share of mobile commerce, which Forrester Research says could reach $31 billion in 2016.
“We project that 44% of last-minute searches for gifts this holiday season will be mobile searches,” said Haines. “We’re just seeing more and more commerce activity moving onto the mobile device.”
To kick off Go Mo, Google is holding a webinar on “making mobile-friendly websites.” To access the Go Mo resources or register for a webinar, log on to howtoGoMo.com.