Are You Losing Mobile Traffic?

iphone app storeMobile Internet use is on the rise.  In fact, 25% of all searches are now done on mobile devices and that’s on the rise.  With more and more people using mobile devices to search the Internet, it’s becoming more and more important for your website to be properly configured for mobile devices.  How important?  According to one study, it could be causing you a 68% decline in traffic!

The Report
A recent report from BrightEdge looked into differences between how websites were setup to handle mobile traffic and what effect that had on search rankings and traffic.  Basically, they noticed that there were differences between rankings when searches are done on a pc and when they are a mobile device and wondered why.  So, they looked at the three primary ways websites are configured to handle mobile traffic:

  • Responsive design
  • Dynamic design
  • Having a separate mobile website

Results?
In general, they found that they were all pretty similar in results.  The sites ranked about a half a ranking lower in mobile than on the pc due to local competition.  However, when there were errors in the mobile configuration, those mobile rankings dropped by about 1.82 positions.  Granted, that doesn’t seem like a lot, but when you consider that the #1 position gets about 32% of clicks, #2 gets about 17%, and #3 gets about 11% (search traffic percentages discussed here), you can see that dropping two positions can make a huge difference!  According to the report, it’s about a 68% decline in traffic.

Keep in mind that this loss of traffic is only due to a decrease in search rankings.  If your website doesn’t display well on mobile devices, you are probably also losing traffic from people just leaving.

So, which mobile configuration is best?
Technically, there’s no difference…if you do it properly.  However, the report indicated there were:

  • 0% responsive sites they found with errors
  • About 30% of dynamic sites had errors
  • Over 70% of separate mobile sites had errors.

Hmmm.

Recommendations:
So, go with whatever configuration works best for your site, but if it doesn’t really matter for your site, going with a responsive design is playing the good odds.  Whatever you choose, though, it’s worth taking a little extra time to make sure that everything is configured properly so you aren’t throwing away 68% of your mobile traffic.

Share Your Thoughts:

  • Is your website configured for mobile traffic?
  • What mobile configuration do you prefer?

Kurt Steinbrueck is the Director of Marketing Services with OurChurch.Com. He also serves on the leadership of Family of Christ Lutheran Church in Tampa, FL. You can find him on Google+ as .

5 Responses to “Are You Losing Mobile Traffic?”

  1. How do I go about getting a responsive site, or checking to see if my site is 'responsive'?

    • Hi Shahidul. Typically, you would know if your website is responsive because that was something you intended when you designed the site. If you aren't sure, you can check to see how your site looks on different devices which will generally indicate if your site is responsive. There are several sites that can do this for you, including http://ami.responsivedesign.is/. If your site just displays less on the smaller screens instead of resizing or adjusting what is shown to fit the screen (maybe showing one or two columns instead of three, etc.), then it's probably not responsive.

      If you find that your website is not responsive and you want to have one (which would be a good thing), then you can either modify your site to make it responsive or build a new responsive website. Web development is not my forte, but from what I understand to change a non-responsive site into being responsive, you can add media queries to your css file to determine the css for various devices that might view your site. If you aren't familiar with css, this might be too complicated. The other obvious choice is to build a new site that is designed to be responsive. We, OurChurch.Com, are able to create responsive websites for our custom design clients. If you'd be interested in discussing a custom, responsive website, please submit a free, no-obligation consultation request: http://www.ourchurch.com/design/custom-web-design

      God bless!

  2. I have a lot of sermons on my site using your embedded Windows Media Player. These do not even show up on my Android tablet. Either there is just blank space where the player should be or there is a little box with a question mark. Is there anything we can do to get these sermons play on mobile? Thank you.

    • Hi Jean, video presents some challenges on mobile devices because a lot of video formats and video players are proprietary and a lot of mobile devices don't support other companies proprietary. We are working to try to find a universal approach that will work across all devices.

  3. Thank you. Please note, however, that my files are audio only and not videos. I would like to be able to submit a podcast to a service like Tune-In Radio. However, I think that would require my having the links to the sermons all on one page. I experimented with your audio gallery the other day to see if it would play on my tablet. I did not, but now I'm wondering if that will work to submit to services such as Tune-In Radio and ITunes if I have an RSS feed. I don't know enough about podcasting to know if this will work.