It’s hard to go anywhere (including church) where people are not pulling out their phones for more than calls. We’re clearly a mobile culture with habits now firmly entrenched in anytime, anywhere access.
Churches must, at a minimum, make a mobile version of their websites for these small screens.
For those pastors wanting some stats to back this up, it’s helpful to note the following:
94 percent of smartphone users have searched for local info—including your church. *
67 percent (and climbing) of mobile users are now smartphone users (159.8 million people in the U.S. own smartphones as of October 2013). *
66 percent of smartphone users visited an organization in person after viewing a website. *
90 percent of smartphone users acted within 24 hours of viewing the website. *
73 percent of mobile searches trigger additional actions, such as continued research (36 percent) and in-person visits (25 percent). *
57 percent of mobile users won’t recommend an organization based on a poorly designed mobile site. *
37 percent of all digital media time is spent on mobile. *
But where to start?
Pastors don’t need to bother trying to keep up with the technology, but they do need to empower their staff/volunteer web team to ensure their church websites are mobile friendly.
Six quick checks any pastor can do:
1. Does the website load fast? Mobile phones are not always on Wi-Fi, so under three seconds load time is the goal.
2. Is the text big enough to read without zooming? The only acceptable answer is “yes.”
3. Is navigation simple and obvious? Less is more with only a few, obvious choices for most mobile websites.
4. Are links thumb-friendly? Text links must be easy to click.
5. Do images fit on the screen? Chances are text-only or very limited picture usage is best (and loads faster, too).
6. Is there a one-click method for a phone number, email and map (directions)? The only acceptable answer is “yes.”
Answering these questions is a quick and easy way to determine if your church website needs a mobile-friendly overhaul.
In fact, quite often you’ll find that the exercise of thinking through your mobile website is a great launching point for rethinking your existing desktop website, too. Less really is more!