For those of us who are attached to our mobile phones (yes, that’s pretty much everyone), will know it is likely that the device does not leave our side. So it is glaringly obvious that we would want a mobile version of our website to go everywhere with the customer too and be instantly accessible if need be.
As we try and build communities online on our mobile site, we first have to make sure that our site is appealing enough to encourage a community to communicate. Here are three quick facts not to be forgotten when building a mobile site for the purpose of bringing together a community.
Keep your community in mind, from beginning to end
It is no secret that everyone wants an app these days – but is an app the best option for your mobile community? It is imperative that you do not forget your target market in this instance; otherwise you will be creating a product that will not be utilised as much as you would have hoped. Creating a mobile site that can accommodate anything from an iPhone 4 to a simpler Nokia model will pay off in the end as its diversity will draw crowds. Do not forget that apps will serve the minority of the community, and the majority is your primary focus.
Make it versatile, just like your community
Do not overcomplicate your mobile site but make sure to keep it fresh, simple and versatile. Your mobile site needs to draw a community together and if your site is not so easy to use, you will lose followers and those who do use your site will not stay for long. It is essential that you know your mobile audience in terms of demographics and target markets and create a mobile site that they want to see, talk about and most importantly, interact on. For example, the BBC are smart about their approach, knowing that people use their mobile site for a different reason that they would use their website online.
Think like the user
Imagine you are using your mobile site to view your brand. Make it clear what your needs are and ensure that these needs are executed without fuss and confusion. If someone is connected to a mobile community, mobile friendliness is key, so make sure that your mobile site is welcoming without being too simple as to border on boring. Amazon, for example, is simple and straightforward but still appealing to those who are looking to buy online. Having a mobile site that is appealing to the masses will result in you creating a community that can hopefully use both your website as well as your mobile site with ease.
These three quick facts might be obvious to some, but it is highly likely that many who create mobile sites want it to look great, and therefore forget about functionality. Do not forget your mobile audience and what they want and this will result in your building blocks stay securely in place.