We’re taking a break from the social media stuff, but I’ll return next week with a new article on hashtags and how to use them in your business.

As I sit here writing this on my laptop, I think about how our world has changed, and how business has to change with it. How everyone I know has a smartphone, or tablet, or e-reader, or all three.

I look around, and I have my laptop, a tablet, a tablet PC, my iPhone and my Kindle Fire. They all can access the internet and let me surf or research.

Let me tell you a little story. It’s about our new reality, and how you can use it.

My daughter is a new Lt. in the US Army, commissioned after her college graduation this past May. She will be serving 7 years in defense of her country. She’s only 22, and newly out on her own for real (no more college, and moved out of the house).

Yes, her dad and I are as proud as we can be, but we’re also worried. Not that she’ll do ok, she’s a smart young lady. But this is her first real foray into making living decisions. We want her to succeed out there in the big, wide world, so we help her out however she needs.

Recently, she chatted me up on my cell via text messaging. This is her most common mode of communication, so we text often. The next several hours until bedtime, and then for most of the next morning, we swapped texts and links, hunting for an apartment for her in her first posting, which will be in Washington state.

We dug around on Zillow and and Trulia, looking at apartments and houses, debating the benefits of fenced yards (she has 2 dogs here at Camp Grandma) and wood vs. carpeting. Making lists of needed features and compiling a list of the places she wants to visit as potential new homes when we drive her out there, all the way across the country from our home in North Carolina.

We also looked at furniture on Rooms to Go, and Ashley Furniture, because her dad and I plan to help furnish her new place, as her graduation gift.

mobileinternetstatsWe’re trying to get our ducks in a row before we get there, so she can find and move into an apartment or townhome in the 10 days the Army gives her to get settled.

And here is the interesting thing. I didn’t do this on my laptop, or even my tablet. I did it on my iPhone. And it was a fairly pleasant experience. (And got me a look from my hubby who asked ‘Why are you using your phone when your computer is right on the table in front of you?’ LOL) Go on, take a look at these sites on your phone. Notice how easy it is to get around, and find things on their site.

Is your business portable? Does your website work on a phone or tablet? This is called ‘responsive’ in the geek world. If your website isn’t ‘responsive’ it will look really, *really* tiny on a phone. People will have to enlarge it just to read anything. And since many of them are using a smaller screen almost exclusively, you can lose potential business if your site isn’t readable on those screens.

Predictions indicate that mobile internet usage will overtake desktop/laptop internet usage this year. That means that an ever-increasing number of *your* clients and prospects will be access most or all of their internet via their phones and tablets.

Are you ready? How does your site look in a cell phone? Go take a look. I’ll wait.

Are you back? What did it look like?

If your website isn’t mobile ready, how much potential business will you be missing? We don’t know. But I’ll tell you this: If your website is in WordPress (the most popular platform out there), and is using an up to date, properly configured theme, it will look fine. And if it is in WordPress and *isn’t* properly configured for mobile, it can be fairly easily fixed!

If it doesn’t, then talk to your designer. Find out what it will take to make your site responsive, make it look good on a phone and tablet.

Yes, it might cost money. But that is a one-time cost. Every time someone in your target market accesses your site via their phone or tablet and leaves because your site isn’t readable, you’re losing money. If you get one new client because they found you on mobile, will that be worth the investment?

Yeah, I thought you’d say that. That was what I said too.

So I’ll ask again, is your business portable? If the answer is no, time to look at it, and get it ready for the looming changes before it costs you customers. 

Creating an experience online for your potential clients that will be pleasant for them, and making your website, social media and other online ‘properties’ work to fill your business with is a puzzle that can be difficult to solve. Together we can create a map to success for your digital world. Request a complementary consultation and we’ll start creating that map to more clients!

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