In the United States and in many places in the world, the number of mobile phone lines has already surpassed the number of land lines. There are more than 2.4 billion mobile phone users, and a thousand more are added every minute!
More than 90 percent of the U.S. population has a mobile device, and a significant number access the internet via their mobile phone.
According to Nielsen research, “40% of iPhone/iPad users access the Internet more on their mobile than their desktop.”
With the introduction of PDAs and smart phones such as the iPhone, Droid, Palm and Blackberries, cell phones are more computers than phones. We use them not only to keep in touch, but to stay connected and gather information. The mobile market is exploding and web usage is growing at an amazing rate.
The market segment has enormous possibilities and it can’t be argued that businesses would be smart to start engaging mobile users as soon as possible.
How Do Travel and Tourism Businesses Take Advantage of this Trend?
Create a Mobile-Friendly Website
Your business obviously needs to have a properly thought out SEO strategy, a well designed website, a Facebook and Twitter marketing plan, but more and more businesses are recognizing that they need to have a website that is mobile friendly too.
It is best have a separate website for mobile users. Hand held devices (PDAs and Smart Phones) do not work or display the same as a laptop or a desktop machine.
If someone is searching for lodging in your area on their phone, it is important that your website not only be found but can it be viewed properly on a mobile device? It is essential that your website must be designed for users to easily access, view and use on a mobile screen. A cellular visitor is the most likely to leave if your website that doesn’t load properly or is not easy to navigate.
Here are a few principles about mobile Web design that you should consider:
- Do not use tables for the main layout, it will not look right on mobile phones.
- Avoid Flash
- Use CSS for the layout to ensure maximum compatibility.
- It is better practice to use either XML or XHTML,
- Set character encoding at UTF-8.
- Mobile phones have different screen sizes. This is where you will experience most difficulties if you want your mobile Web site design to run on all of them.
- Put all the most important information at the top of the page.
- Make your mobile site design convenient for your consumers.
- Due to the difficulty of entering text on mobile devices, radio buttons, bullet lists, and dropdown selections make the user experience more friendly.
- Images should be jpeg or gif only.
- Provide back buttons and links. Many phones are not equipped with back buttons.
- The maximum page size for a mobile page is 20 kilobytes.
- Remember that most users are paying fees to access your mobile website. Make sure that they are getting their money’s worth!
PDA and mobile users would like to be able to book a room rapidly and easily. Dominate your niche with a mobile-friendly site.
Need a few pointers? Let us know by leaving a comment below or contact the Travel SEO Experts.