The Mobile First Mindset: Make The Move!

The Mobile First Mindset:

What exactly does it mean to be mobile first and why is it important to adopt this mindset?

Well, when you consider that social shoppers are spending more money online than ever before. Combined with the fact that as of 2016 approximately half of the world’s population uses the internet via their portable devices. And in late 2015 mobile searches on Google officially exceeded desktop searches worldwide. It becomes quite apparent why this mindset is so important.

With ¾ of American adults owning a smartphone, the adoption of a mobile mindset has become in many facets crucial to modern business survival in the digital age.


M-commerce, according to a BI Intelligence report, will make up to 284 billion in sales totaling 45 percent of all e-commerce.

IBM released data which stated that on Black Friday; 45% of online traffic, while only 21% of actual sales were made on mobile. On average, consumers spend 51% of their time, but only 15% of their dollars on their portable devices, while they spend 41% of time and 85% of dollars on desktop. There has emerged a gap between shopping and buying, characterized by browsing on the go, but buying on desktop.

The mobile bounce rates and conversion rates for m-commerce websites are high. Smartphone shoppers add considerably less items to their carts, and are more likely to abandon those carts altogether.

But why?

Poor UX (user experience) on the interface is a significant factor when it comes to bounce, conversion and purchase rates on mobile. Users unhappy with their experience are less likely to participate in a call to action, become a conversion, or return after their initial experience.

Smartphone Funnel

The add-to-basket and purchase rates are lower for mobile than for desktop, by more than 2%. More users view, basket, and purchase items on desktop than on their phones or tablets. The smartphone funnel has about a 2.46% conversion rate, while the desktop funnel boasts a 4.55% conversion rate.

Common mistakes affecting conversion rates include having too many banners or otherwise irrelevant content, too many steps involved to purchase, or too many forms.

Using registration forms as a part of a lead generation, or lead scoring initiative is fine, but always keep in mind that less is more when it comes to designing your mobile site or app.

Users will always remember a poor experience, and more often than not they are more likely to share a bad experience than a good one.

Get Social

If your business hasn’t already, then it is time to get social!

Monetate (a firm that makes customer-experience management software for businesses), published a report which shows that although still not caught up to desktop, quarter over quarter and year after year, traffic and conversion rates for mobile are steadily increasing.

Their published data showed that consumers who shopped on e-commerce smartphone funnel has about a 2.46% conversion rate, while the desktop funnel boasts a 4.55% conversion rate.

Optimizing For Mobile

Optimizing for mobile doesn’t simply involve altering image sizes to fit handheld devices. It involves much more than a strategy on how to avoid your users clicking away. Google has a preference for mobile friendly interfaces. They often have better SEO (search engine optimization) and appear higher up on the SERP (search engine results page).

Optimization has a purpose beyond marketing. Because, when your website is made more mobile friendly, and responsive, you in turn use less bandwidth which lightens the load on your servers.

Converted pages load faster, as they contain less elements and images which significantly reduce a page’s total weight by up to two-thirds.

This makes for a more comfortable on the go browsing experience.

Don’t Just Throw Money

One of the worst mistakes to make during your move to mobile is to just simply throw money at the idea of being mobile friendly. Don’t rush into things for fear of lagging behind.  It is better to develop a strategy and platform that works best for you.

There is a misconception that mobile is growing at the expense of desktop. Although in reality this isn’t really true. Rather, usage across all platforms has increased together.

Knowing your market is essential to avoid wasting money. Otherwise your spending will end up aimlessly lacking strategy and a return on your investment.

Conducting usability studies involving A/B tests are a good method of analytics. They can reveal whether a site offers the type of content and functionality a visitor is seeking.


As it stands right now mobile seems to be a tool for browsing as opposed to buying. Adapting to change and adopting a mobile first mindset will become a more significant factor in modern business success.

Adapting this mindset mindset does not involve moving towards an exclusion of other users. It isn’t a suggestion to put desktop to the wayside, and focus solely on mobile development. What it does mean however, that the data shows a need to move in a new direction. A that supports a variation in website design, and internet use.

Consumers want the smartphone shopping experience, which leaves it up to enterprise to catch up.

By: Amberly Martin
Project Manager at Generation Digital Corp.

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