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Joanne Grantz
 
May 5, 2015 | eCommerce , Site Design and Management | Joanne Grantz

How to provide a great mobile experience

A great view from your hands
Mobile has become especially important in light of the recent change in Google's algorithms that emphasize mobile friendliness. This is a huge opportunity for m-commerce.  Our Vin65 data shows that 35 percent of orders were received over mobile last year. And this stat holds true for all mobile purchases, not just wine. In a recent critio.com article, Jonathan Wolf reported on the growth of mobile transactions worldwide.  If your site isn’t mobile enhanced, you will miss out on sales.

The question is, what are the specific changes that are needed to make your site mobile friendly? The first step is to focus on the layout. Mobile design requires a greater degree of simplicity in terms of navigation and look, as AT&T Business Circle noted. The smaller screen resolution essentially demands that there be as little text as possible, instead favoring images to get the message across. 

Navigation has to be simplified for other reasons as well.  A mobile phone user is often on a data-capped plan, and browsing can use valuable data allowances. The fewer pages a customer has to go through to make their selections and get to check out, the better. This could mean compressing many pages into one, like the product and checkout pages. There is no need for gratuitous and disjointed elements such as dropdown menus, item carousels or overly long descriptions.

Having the right touch
Going further into navigation, it's important to consider how users are actually accessing your site. That’s usually through press buttons on their touch screens. With this in mind, ecommerce agency Hongkiat recommends having buttons that are easy to press. That includes having a button size of 7 mm in width and length, while separating elements by a minimum of 2 mm. Make sure that the buttons themselves are entirely clickable across the surface of the button, not just in the center.

That said, keep the number of necessary button presses to a minimum. Navigating through different categories and pages just to get the results a customer wants is cumbersome, which will cause visitors to abandon without making a purchase. Keeping the number of pages to navigate to a minimum can help mitigate this problem.

This extends especially to the checkout process. On the most basic principle, a mobile commerce store only needs the name, address, email and payment information. Requiring more information than that will cause users to abandon as well. Consider simplifying the process of entering information, along with adding the option of storing information later through a registered user account. In this latter situation, you can even create a one-touch checkout process similar to Amazon's. In this way, you make things a lot easier for your customers. The ultimate goal of a mobile wine store is to keep things simple and quick. 

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