Author Archives: Annette

Google Maps Street View Now Available

Google has rolled out its Street View technology to mobile maps.  You don’t have to do anything – its already live on your mobile site if you use our Map Element.  If you have a mobile map element live on your MoFuse mobile website, your viewers can open the Google Map simply by pressing the actual map on their smartphone screen.  When the map opens, they can choose the Street View.

Just launched from Google and it already works on your mobile sites today!  Here’s an example of what it looks like on the phone:

4 Tips for Reselling Mobile Websites

 

open biz

 

Reselling mobile websites is a smart business decision in 2012. Over 85% of mobile handsets can now access the mobile web, but over 93% of all small businesses do not have a mobile ready website.

Since the majority of  businesses are currently without a mobile website, there is an enormous opportunity for you to offer mobile solutions to your customers- now!  It’s easy when you work with a provider like MoFuse because we offer a program with special support and pricing just for Partners.

To help you get started, here are a few basic tips that will help you to sell mobile web products to your customers.

1) Present a mobile website as a “must have”

It is!  Some might wonder if a mobile website is necessary at all.  The quickest way to get them to understand why they need a mobile site is to ask them to bring up their current desktop website on their mobile  browser. Yikes!   Is the load time greater than 4 – 5 seconds? Once it loads can you use the site or do you have to zoom and position?

2) Help them design their mobile website

You’re the ‘doctor’. Help them know what is best for their mobile site. Connection and directions are very high on the list for mobile site design.  A click to call is a must!  Depending on their business they may want to include maps, m-commerce, coupons or even their blog feeds on the mobile site.  Design is important as it drives more usage by their customers.

The most important question you should be asking yourself prior to building a mobile website is: do they really need everything that is on their desktop site?  Probably not.   Keep it simple!  Often this means cutting back on unnecessary content.

3) Keywords For Your customer’s business - Who’s Looking

Knowing what types of information your customer’s customers are searching in order to find their business can help immensely with your mobile design decisions. Develop the content and keywords to match search patterns.

According to Bing, half of all mobile search queries are local-centric . Local mobile search is definitely a key trend in the mobile web.  It is important to design a mobile website that considers search terms. It will make the mobile site search friendly.

4) Set them up for results!

Learning about mobile web audience is a must!  Analytics gives you a view of traffic results helping to give you important insights about the effectiveness of site content.  Add surveys and data capture forms for a deeper understanding of the audience.  That’s what having a mobile site is really all about- connecting with their audience!  Giving your customer mobile interactions with their customers is a home run.

For additional tips and help in designing for the mobile web check out our white paper, Designing for the Mobile Web.  Also MoFuse offers discounts for Partners who sell 10 or more mobile sites! We make it easy for you to build your own mobile web business- today.  Find out more by emailing us at partner@mofuse.com

 

5 Guidelines for Selecting a Mobile Website Builder

Welding Mobile Site Build

Every business needs a mobile website now more than ever. Mobile web traffic is up 35% since July 2011.  Smartphones are becoming the primary platform for search and a key access method to find your business.

A mobile website is quite different than your desktop website.  The mobile audience wants information quickly and more directly.  Usually the level detail on your desktop site just confuses the context of a mobile site.

What is the quickest, most effective way to get mobile today?

A mobile web content management platform (mobile CMS) is just what you need.  The actual site builder is only one aspect of a mobile CMS, but it is so very important!  It should get you mobile fast, and provide a method for easy ongoing edits.  The builder you select should provide ways to add mobile specific features and most important, provide ongoing mobile optimization and analytics about your mobile audience.

Some mobile website building tools are nothing more than a simplistic mechanism which essentially scrapes content from your existing desktop website and applies that same content to a mobile template.  While it may seem like a quick and easy approach at first, there is a huge opportunity to create a mobile ‘mess’!  This scrape method assumes that everything on your desktop site belongs on your mobile site and that is a mistake.   Often with these scrape site build methods, there is a limitation on the amount of design flexibility for your mobile site. The content is, more or less, pre-selected for your mobile website and laid out according to its order on your desktop website.  That context is likely not optimal for the mobile web audience.

When considering a mobile website builder for your organization, there are 5 questions that should be answered:

1) Does the solution make it easy to create a mobile site even if you do not have a desktop website today?

Can you provide a context for your mobile site or are you ‘fenced in’ with their formats and templates.

2) Once you’ve created your mobile website, will you have the flexibility to change the content and design whenever you like?

It should be easy to update your mobile site once it is created.

3) Will your new mobile website be optimized for all types of devices, or just a small subset of wireless devices?

Also can you intelligently serve the content by device, for example send your iPad viewers to the desktop site but iPhone viewers to your mobile site.

4) Does your mobile website platform help you to build a mobile site that adds features very specific to mobile such as geo-location, QR code management and mobile ads?  Does it help to integrate social features such as Facebook and Twitter? Mobile data capture forms?

All of these features are very important aspects of creating a relationship with mobile viewers, and making the most of the mobile web touchpoint.

5) Does the platform include information about your mobile web audience?  Can you also add your own analytics tags?

Analytics are ultimately most important for your business to learn what is happening on mobile.  You should be able to add your own analytics tag or use the platform analytics provided.

A powerful mobile website builder will allow you the flexibility to prioritize the content and design your mobile site with the mobile audience in mind.

A quality mobile website platform will also optimize your mobile site for any device on the market.  You shouldn’t have to worry that your content is not rendering well for certain mobile site visitors. According to a recent ComScore report, over half of all current mobile users in the US are using non-smartphones. While the number of smartphones on the market is growing by the day, it is still important to consider your mobile visitors who may be using feature phones.

Selecting a mobile website builder which allows you to select, edit, and optimize your content and design for all of your mobile site visitors is the right way to go.

Keeping it Mobile, For SEO

Do you include external links on your mobile site?

If the answer is yes, then the next question is, do these links go to another mobile site?

An easy way to optimize your site for SEO is to make sure that whenever possible, you are always linking to a mobile web page.

For example, many of our clients incorporate YouTube videos in their mobile site. YouTube makes things very easy as they do automatic mobile detection for any link that you set up.  However, if you use their actual mobile URL (m.youtube.com/yourvideohere...) when setting up an external link from your MoFuse site instead of the regular desktop URL (www.youtube.com/yourvideohere...) this will only help improve your mobile SEO ranking.

The bottom line: use a mobile URL for any external links, whenever you can!

What Should My Mobile Site Do?

As phones get smarter and mobile browsers get better at rendering your desktop site, many ask the question: “Why do I need a mobile site at all?”   The mobile experience is not about shrinking your site to fit on a tiny screen, rather it is about communicating with your customers when they are in an entirely new context.  No matter the certainty of new devices, faster browsers and higher bandwidth in the future, the mobile experience merits its own design!  Let’s get started to make your website mobile friendly.

It all starts with the user- they are in a different ‘mode’ or context when they are using a handheld to access your site.  The point being, your user is mobile and their needs at that moment will be quite different from that of a desktop viewer.   Your full website on a mobile screen would be overwhelming at best and a major annoyance at worst.

Rethinking Mobile:  How do I begin?
Mobile Web Development

As usual, the first thing to do is to step in to your customer’s shoes.   If someone is accessing your site for a mobile device what are the kinds of things they would want to do there?    Will they read your latest article, find a store location or perhaps check to see if you are offering a special promotion?

Consider some basic aspects of the mobile user:  They are likely out and about and time is an issue for them.  They are looking for something more specific from you – either a recent article or some information to connect with your brand, maybe they want directions to your storefront.   By the way, they are holding a device that can make a phone call so consider adding voice interaction (can you say “click to call”).   The device probably has a smaller and perhaps less comfortable keyboard than the desktop- so you’ll also want to consider what keystrokes you will ask them to perform.

Less will always be better-  that is the primary rule of converting your website to mobile.

Here are some questions to consider when you are making a website mobile:
•    What is the context of the average mobile visitor?
•    What are the goals of the mobile user?
•    Why are they going to your mobile website at this time?
•    What are they likely and unlikely to have any interest in?
MoFuse Top 10 Rules of Mobile Website Design

1. Keep it Simple 
With over 5000 devices and screen sizes, simple layout is the only way to go

2. Make it Convenient
Put most important information at the top, easy to access

3. Speed Up Their Use
Think less keystrokes, use radio buttons or dropdowns to get data entry when possible

4. Don’t Annoy Them
If you use images use jpeg or gifs to make them quick to load, nobody likes to wait for a slow loading site

5. Pay attention to Navigation
MoFuse ensures a ‘back’ button on every page, nesting topics leads to quicker understanding

6. Consider Color Contrast
Make sure text shows up against a pleasant, yet contrasted background for easy reading

7. Connect With Them
If it is appropriate for your business type, enable them with a Click to Call button, use the phone’s core capabilities

8. Help Them Find It
A search bar is more than a convenience; it is a time-saver and often their quickest way to get answers

9. Keep Them Up To Date (and make your job easier)
Use RSS feeds to populate your mobile site, whatever you use on your desktop site should work fine

10. Listen and Iterate
Just like with your desktop site, you will learn as you go and it is easy to make changes with the premium site builder

For more information on Best Practices for Mobile Design visit the W3C guide: http://www.w3.org/TR/mobile-bp/

To get some ideas on the best new mobile site designs you can check out:  http://www.mobileawesomeness.com

MoFuse has a platform that helps you build sites for mobile devices around the world.  Find us a www.mofuse.com

Is A Mobile Site Really Necessary?

Today there are over 5000 mobile devices that can display some version of a web page. That number is getting bigger fast!   As more phones become “smart” and more computing devices become… well smaller, you need to have a strategy around having a high quality mobile presence that works everywhere.

Your customers are mobile, be there for them. It’s time to create a mobile website.

A recent report showed that mobile web traffic more than doubled between January 2008 and 2009.  Mobile web traffic is going to continue to rise, quickly.  Sites like ESPN have already had days where their mobile site gets more traffic than their desktop site!
Whether in the US, Asia or Europe your customers are likely carrying more than one hand held mobile device.  Legacy PC companies are all moving mobile, and about to put new portable “netbook” devices on the streets.  At the end of March 2009 Michael Dell, CEO of Dell said “For the last three years, we have integrated 3G radios into our notebooks,” said Dell. “We already have agreements with many mobile carriers around netbook devices, so it wouldn’t be unreasonable to expect that we would have smaller mobile Internet devices or smartphones in the future.”

If you want to make your website mobile friendly there are a few ways to get there: an expensive custom built site or you can go to a provider like MoFuse who will help you by offering mobile platforms for building business sites and blog sites. 

What is MoFuse?

MoFuse is the fastest growing network of build-it-yourself mobile sites in the world. Short for Mobile Fusion, MoFuse provides a platform that enables businesses, bloggers and any other web publisher to provide a compelling mobile experience on any mobile device

Stand Up And Be Mobi Counted

The first mobile phone to have Internet connectivity was the Nokia 9000 Communicator, launched in Finland in 1996 (source Wikipedia).  NTT DoCoMo in Japan launched the first mobile Internet service, i-Mode in 1999 and this is considered the birth of the mobile phone based Internet.

That was 10 years ago!

In 2008 the cross-over happened, when more Internet access devices were mobile phones than personal computers. In many parts of the developing world, the ratio is as much as 10 mobile phone users to one PC user on the Internet (Wikipedia).  Is there more of a compelling reason to consider making you website mobile friendly?

Earlier this year in Las Vegas the latest numbers were in:  the mobile web had seen a sevenfold increase in mobile-friendly Web sites since last year.   This reported by dotMobi, the company behind “.mobi” mobile web site naming convention.  New mobile sites are on the rise.

When dotMobi first performed this study a year ago, 150,000 mobile Web sites were available. dotMobi now counts approximately 1.1 million mobile site addresses in the world, based on a scan of the largest Top Level Domains (TLDs) in use. The 1.1 million number means that approximately 0.8 percent of all domains are likely to have mobile-friendly content….  In perspective 99.2% of all web sites do not have a mobile friendly site!

As a comparison, Verisign estimates there are approximately 77.4 million “live” PC based websites (with ‘.com’ or ‘.net’ extensions).

Why should you care?

People are looking for your mobile site.  In May comScore released a study that showed mobile users (in the US) are accessing the Mobile web 35.3% of the time, compared to 37% for voice and 27.7% for SMS.  The demand is growing very fast.    If you aren’t sure how to get started, check out a mobile website builder like MoFuse who can get your started immediately and at a low cost.  You need to be counted on the mobile web!

What Should My Site Do?

As phones get smarter and mobile browsers get better at rendering your desktop site, many ask the question: “Why do I need a mobile site at all?”   The mobile experience is not about shrinking your site to fit on a tiny screen, rather it is about communicating with your customers when they are in an entirely new context.  No matter the certainty of new devices, faster browsers and higher bandwidth in the future, the mobile experience merits its own design!  Let’s get started to make your website mobile friendly.

It all starts with the user- they are in a different ‘mode’ or context when they are using a handheld to access your site.  The point being, your user is mobile and their needs at that moment will be quite different from that of a desktop viewer.   Your full website on a mobile screen would be overwhelming at best and a major annoyance at worst.

 

Rethinking Mobile:  How do I begin?
Mobile Web Development

As usual, the first thing to do is to step in to your customer’s shoes.   If someone is accessing your site for a mobile device what are the kinds of things they would want to do there?    Will they read your latest article, find a store location or perhaps check to see if you are offering a special promotion?

Consider some basic aspects of the mobile user:  They are likely out and about and time is an issue for them.  They are looking for something more specific from you – either a recent article or some information to connect with your brand, maybe they want directions to your storefront.   By the way, they are holding a device that can make a phone call so consider adding voice interaction (can you say “click to call”).   The device probably has a smaller and perhaps less comfortable keyboard than the desktop- so you’ll also want to consider what keystrokes you will ask them to perform.

Less will always be better-  that is the primary rule of converting your website to mobile.

Here are some questions to consider when you are making a website mobile:
•    What is the context of the average mobile visitor?
•    What are the goals of the mobile user?
•    Why are they going to your mobile website at this time?
•    What are they likely and unlikely to have any interest in?

 

MoFuse Top 10 Rules of Mobile Website Design

1. Keep it Simple 
With over 5000 devices and screen sizes, simple layout is the only way to go

2. Make it Convenient
Put most important information at the top, easy to access

3. Speed Up Their Use
Think less keystrokes, use radio buttons or dropdowns to get data entry when possible

4. Don’t Annoy Them
If you use images use jpeg or gifs to make them quick to load, nobody likes to wait for a slow loading site

5. Pay attention to Navigation
MoFuse ensures a ‘back’ button on every page, nesting topics leads to quicker understanding

6. Consider Color Contrast
Make sure text shows up against a pleasant, yet contrasted background for easy reading

7. Connect With Them
If it is appropriate for your business type, enable them with a Click to Call button, use the phone’s core capabilities

8. Help Them Find It
A search bar is more than a convenience; it is a time-saver and often their quickest way to get answers

9. Keep Them Up To Date (and make your job easier)
Use RSS feeds to populate your mobile site, whatever you use on your desktop site should work fine

10. Listen and Iterate
Just like with your desktop site, you will learn as you go and it is easy to make changes with the premium site builder

For more information on Best Practices for Mobile Design visit the W3C guide: http://www.w3.org/TR/mobile-bp/

To get some ideas on the best new mobile site designs you can check out:  http://www.mobileawesomeness.com

MoFuse has a platform that helps you build sites for mobile devices around the world.  Find us a www.mofuse.com