Becoming Mobile Ready

Are you ready for the mobile revolution?  There are a few options when it comes to creating a mobile experience for your customers.

  1. Create a standalone mobile website for your business.
    A mobile website is a separate website that visitors are redirected to when accessing your site from a mobile device.  A standalone mobile website acts more like a native application for your phone, but it is not downloaded from an “App Store”.  This means you can build one mobile app that works on all devices and is very user friendly.  The major drawback? You must manage two separate websites (both desktop and mobile).
  2. Create a mobile app for your business.
    The most expensive option, but all the most native experience.   A native app for your business must be downloaded in an app store and can only be used on the device it is designed for.  Therefore, you must build separate apps for each device you want to reach.  Also, you must manage each app individually as well as your desktop site.  This option is only recommended for very large companies with resources and personel to manage build and manage applications.
  3. Utilize responsive design in your website.
    Try resizing this website.  You will see that the format changes based on the size of the browser window.  The website will be optimized to look the best on the device it is being viewed on (be it phone, tablet, or desktop).  The biggest advantages? Less expensive and only one site to manage.  This is the most recommended option for a small business owner.
  4. Add mobile plugins to your website.
    If your website is built on WordPress, there are plugins that you can add to the website to optimize its formatting for mobile devices.  The cons?  Pages of your website are not formatted well.  This option is really designed for viewing a blog on a mobile device, not a full business website.  This is the cheapest option, but carries the least desirable results.

Summary:

Small businesses should look into responsive websites for its cost advantages and ease of management.  If you have the money and resources, a native app will have the best user experience.

What are your thoughts on mobile websites?

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