The age of mobile is long upon us.
You know this. I know this. Marketers everywhere know this. And yet, we continue to focus our CRO discussion on desktop.
I think part of this is due to options. There’s a lot less we can do on mobile, so we tend to focus on desktop and then make our desktop design reasonably responsive, ensuring our mobile users don’t have a terrible experience.
But here’s the problem.
When 60% of traffic, on average, is coming from mobile, it can no longer be viewed as secondary. It IS now the primary source of traffic, and accordingly, our CRO efforts should be mobile-focused BEFORE we even think about desktop.
On that note, today we are going to look at 5 ways to optimize your mobile landing pages for increased conversions.
1. Get rid of responsive.
This probably seems a bit counterproductive, but let me explain.
Responsive web design typically operates like this:
- Create a desktop landing page.
- Create parameters that adjust the layout to fit mobile screens.
This is NOT the same as creating a mobile-focused landing page. Your headlines are still written for desktop, not mobile. Your page elements are still designed for desktop, not mobile. Your landing page flow is still designed for desktop, not mobile.
If you want to get real results on mobile, you need landing pages created for mobile users, and as you are about to see, mobile users behave much differently than desktop users.
Making a desktop design that is layout-responsive is no longer enough. You need a separate page for mobile users.
2. Shorten your text.
When creating headlines and blocks of copy for desktop, you have a lot of space to work with. If you can keep your headline within 1-2 lines on a 15 inch screen, you are good-to-go.
When it comes to mobile however, 2 lines on a 15 inch screen can quickly become 4 lines of text on smaller screens, which looks TERRIBLE on a smartphone.
It’s a simple matter of real estate. There is not a lot of room on a phone screen, and users aren’t interested in seeing a headline that takes up half their screen. Smartphone headlines should be shorter and snappier. They should be more to the point and focused on moving readers along quickly to the following content.
3. Bullet Points Are Your Friend
We all know that bullet points are a fantastic page element to utilize in your content. Bullets help us catch the eye and turn a normal paragraph into a more reader-friendly list.
On mobile pages, bullets aren’t just your friend, they’re your best friend.
Bullet points help you accomplish several extremely useful goals:
- You can quickly highlight a list of benefits in a mobile-friendly way.
- You expound on your shortened headlines intuitively.
- Turn unsightly blocks of text into sequenced lists.
Bullet points are very nearly an all-purpose solution when creating mobile landing pages. As a stylistic perk, they even flow very well with scrolled viewing.
4. Embrace The Scroll
There’s a lot of weight given to your “above the fold” real estate, and from a desktop perspective, this is 100% valid. With mobile, and more particular smartphones, the rules are a bit different.
Mobile users are programmed to scroll.
They never stop scrolling. They have zero problem scrolling. Scrolling does not even register as “friction” for them. In fact, few users will land on a page without scrolling a few screens just to see what’s there.
When dealing with a smartphone user, don’t invest too heavily in your above-the-fold real estate. Don’t waste too much time trying to grab a direct-response.
Your goal within the first few screens of your mobile site should simply be to capture attention. Mobile users are easily bored and notoriously unfocused. They will immediately bounce if there is nothing to capture their attention after a second or two of scrolling.
The reality is that many users will browse on their phones but wait to make purchases from their tablets or via desktop. You probably won’t close on mobile, but if you can capture their attention, you can set them up to at least give you their info for future contact, and that’s really what most mobile sites should be focusing on.
Don’t shy away from scroll. Embrace it. Make it work for you.
5. Make Conversion Easy
As I alluded to in the previous point, users aren’t typically looking to purchase via phone. 90% of users switch between devices while pursuing a single goal. Tablets have the highest rate of purchases, followed by desktop, with smartphones coming in last.
Unless you are attempting to sell an immediate-gratification product at a price-point under $5, your best bet is to utilize smartphones to collect leads for future sales. And your collection process needs to be insanely easy.
A 15-entry form is never a great idea, but on desktop, there are product/market exceptions where it works. On mobile, if you’re not running a quiz, there are NO exceptions. Just look at this monstrosity:
Ain’t nobody got time for that.
Focus your smartphone experience on grabbing contact info in the most low-friction manner possible. The easier it is to convert, the more likely you are to do so, and with smartphone users, you really don’t have much of a chance to accomplish anything else.
You really can’t afford to make mobile an afterthought. It’s important to understand that users behave different on every platform.
Simply making your website responsive isn’t the right approach for most businesses. If you can create a unique mobile-focused experience for smartphone users, you can create a powerful new lead generation tool for your business.
Make your copy shorter and snappier. Utilize bullet points. Embrace scrolling and put it to work for you. And finally, test your hypotheses!
And most importantly, focus on making mobile conversion as easy as possible, even if that means redefining goals for your mobile site. There’s a lot of potential there, but you’ll strike out if you waste time trying to get your pitcher’s batting average to .300.