Since my client's websites are all ok, and we have been taking on more clients with the push, I thought it might be fun to look at some businesses in the Seattle area and see who is and who isn't mobile friendly. I used the list of the top 100 companies to work for in 2014 on Seattle Business Magazine (plus my Father's company), and looked at each site on my Samsung S5 phone. After which, I then ran each one through the Google Mobile Friendly Test. I did grab the first marketing agency that failed the mobile friendly test, but felt it wasn't right to keep going with all the ones I found since they were direct competition. Though, I have to say I am shocked at how many marketing and IT companies don't have mobile friendly websites.
The following is a list of those sites in no particular order:
I figured it would also be kid of fun to see how many people search on Google (and partners) for terms around commercial real estate. So, using Google's Keyword Tool I plugged in the following terms, and set the location to Seattle, WA, Tacoma, WA, Redwood City, CA, Portland, OR, and San Jose, CA - all cities I know that the firm has offices. The terms include: property management, office space, commercial realtor, office space for lease, investment buildings, invest in real estate.
In February of 2015 alone 39.2% of searches around those terms were on mobile devices, with over 50% on October of 2014.
By not optimizing for SEO, or even bidding on these terms in SEM, the company is missing out on ~100k impressions and nearly 50% of those users bailing because the site isn't easy to navigate on a mobile device - and that's just the local searches in the cities I chose.
The site is a pretty basic brochureware site that could easily be created in WordPress so that the client could continue to blog, and the pages set up just the same in a responsive theme. It wouldn't cost them much more than a few thousand to have it done, or they could spend some more and get a full analysis for SEO done and really capture the traffic as well as providing their visitors with the proper information and guidance and convert them to a lead quickly.
The site here looks like it could be a great resource with a tone of information for it's visitors. However, when entered into the Google Mobile-Friendly test I am once again getting the site's text is too small, that links are too close together, and the mobile viewport is not set.
The banner on this website is great for the desktop, but if the site was mobile friendly then eliminating the banner altogether, or perhaps showing a more mobile friendly size to it, would be better for the user. The list of value props on the main content could be resized easily to them fit on the screen with links on each image so that the user could quickly navigate. I am also seeing that the site's text is too small, that links are too close together, and the mobile viewport is not set in the Google Mobile-Friendly test.
This one was an interesting site as it is a tech company. With new technologies providing users with the means to access the internet on their mobile devices and tablets, not to mention that some business professionals walk around with tables heading to meetings and browsing websites from these devices. Once again, another site with the site's text is too small, that links are too close together, and the mobile viewport is not set in the Google Mobile-Friendly test - but this time with the addition of the content being wider than the screen.
I am sure this firm is very capable of updating their website to a mobile friendly one, it's just a matter of prioritizing within the organization, and with Google's push on April 21st, I am sure they will notice a decent drop in traffic as a result.
A law firm that has a responsive and mobile friendly website, but I added to this list mainly because the content is too simplified with the way it is presented. The navigation is difficult to find, and the simple phone number is great for being aggressive with capturing leads, however, it is a bit off-putting to users that need a bit more information about the lawyer to feel they can trust them before making that phone call.
A simple analysis of the website and some market research to get a gauge on how users feel and use the website when they are visiting will help take these lawyer's website to the next level and performing as a great lead generation tool.
The Chronus website is very professional and has a great means of sending the user through a qualifying funnel. Sadly though, by not being mobile friendly the site is losing all of that great work they had put into it with roughly 30%+ users that could be visiting each day. By looking into their Google Analytics (or whatever they choose for their website analysis) the company could see just how many visitors are coming to the site on various devices. Also, looking at the number of visits that are referred by Google and reducing that number significantly could show just how much they will be losing on the April 21st update.
Since the remainder of the sites all have issues when viewed on a mobile device, I thought I would just breeze through them with a screenshot of how they look and leave out the Mobile-Friendly test since they all seem to ended up with the same results. Each and every one of these websites all failed the Mobile-Friendly test in Google, and all have issues when viewing on my Samsung S5. Leaving much room for improvement.
The James Alan Salon website is very typical of the smaller businesses. The last thing they want to think about, or worry about, is their website. This brochureware website was designed and developed with a simple design and layout in mind that conveys what the business is, what they do, and information for the brick and mortar location. But with users now looking for locations of brick and mortar shops on their devices, not being mobile-friendly can seriously harm a smaller business like this one.
Another advertising and design firm that isn't staying up with the latest technologies themselves. While their work is quite impressive (I would definitely hire them) their website isn't reflecting that they are keeping up with industry trends. If they were a traditional firm working mainly with print and video, then I would give them a break, but they have a portfolio of clients who's websites they have created for them. The sites are traditional "old school" table layouts (as I call them) but their work needs to be brought into the 2015's with some web 2,0 and responsive design layouts. I also noticed that their website is very slow to load. The web page test shows the original being more than a second longer to load than an optimized version that works much faster, Add that load time on a cellular network and you've lost your users before they even get to see the first image load.
I absolutely love the top banner interactivity, however the site seems to have been updated without any consideration as to being consistent with design. This one stuck close to my heart as they have a Concur login link (I worked for Concur in the past), and was excited to see the logo there. If only they could work on a responsive design layout, or a mobile version then they could
My last in my sites and commentary. This one is even worse than the others as the site won't even scale down for the device which causes the user to scroll right and left to try to see where to go next, or just simply find information. My laptop is a Windows 7 computer with a touch screen, which will often trick websites into thinking I am on a tablet. I tried clicking the navigation with my mouse and the links won't work, however, when I touch the screen I jump to a #services type of link. This is called a "Push State" which is great for a seamless user experience on a website. It's also a strategy one of the developers brought up with me while I was working at usedcars.com managing the SEO. If implemented correctly, it can be very powerful for the user, but if not, then the ramifications for SEO are extremely harmful. In this case, they did not implement the push state correctly and the results leave Google only able to crawl one page of the website:
Not only will this site see trouble on April 21st, but the site is already having issues with content being crawled and rankings as a result of poor development.
So there you have it, my list of sites I chose to review before the Google update on April 21st. Full disclosure: I have reached out to a few of the people associated with the websites (including my Father as an FYI, though he has no say in the website now that he is retired and playing golf in Palm Desert). It will be interesting to see if any of these sites take a hit and/or update to a more mobile-friendly design after April 21st.