Four Ways the Social Mobile Consumer Will Change Your Website

Four Ways the Social Mobile Consumer Changes Your Website

Are you ready for “Content Grazers”?


by Peter Coish

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The relentless march to social mobile is not going to halt. In fact, it’s picking up the pace, as we noted in a previous story. For brands relying on content marketing, the social mobile consumer  has dramatic implications. Here are just a few:

Your corporate website risks irrelevance

If it’s merely a brochure of your products or services, expect to get even less social traffic from social mobile consumers – few people will want to share that stuff. If you want to engage the social mobile consumer, you’ll have to feed your website a steady diet of fresh and engaging content that people will want to view on the small screen and share in social. These stories combine great images with great copy to solve a problem, inspire, entertain, offer something desirable or appeal to interest in a hobby or activity. Tarted-up advertising won’t cut it.

Does this screen make me look small?

Is your corporate website optimized for mobile small screens? Check it out now on your iPhone. Does it looks a diminutive version of your PC internet website? If so, you need a responsive design.  That itsy bitsy navigation bar is going to be hard for your visitors to use. As will reading that 500-word story.

The social mobile consumer behaves differently on your website

With the PC Internet, metrics like time-on-site and number of page views per visit are great measures of quality of engagement. But the social mobile consumer is a “content grazer” – and is less likely to loiter on your site. In fact, our data shows that mobile consumers visit up to 60% fewer pages per visit. The mobile consumer encounters your content in their Facebook News Feed or Twitter Timeline, reads it (if they’re interested enough) and then returns to their Facebook News Feed or Twitter Timeline, ’cause that’s where the fun is. Getting them to stay longer not only requires great content, but also carefully placed links on your content page to other great content on your site.

This behaviour also suggests that you need to publish more great content more than ever, in order to increase your chances of engaging the mobile consumer.

Your home page doesn’t matter to the social mobile consumer

Okay, so we exaggerate a little. But the social mobile consumer will most often be going directly to your content page from their social feed. That means they may never see your home page. The New York Times lost HALF of its home page traffic in just two years.  And we looked at 12 months of data for several websites we manage and discovered that home page traffic was in fact declining even though the overall number of visitors was growing

The implication is that the design of your content page must deliver an excellent user experience. How the page loads (see this excellent piece on cards for more on that) and where elements like sharing tools are located are vitally important considerations.

So the next time you redesign your website, tell your website team that you want to see the content page design before you see the one for the home page.

On a mobile phone.

Peter Coish is the founder of KURATION.  He can be reached by email here.