Why mobile matters

It's very easy for those of us working with the financial industry to ignore the growing trend of mobile usage with a simple excuse: the financial industry is slow to adopt new technologies.  And for the most part this is true.  But even slow adoption leads to adoption eventually.  And in the case of mobile, this technology is coming fast and furious, so adopt or get left behind.

It sounds a bit dramatic, but let’s look at some web trends over the past year:

  • 70% of smartphone users access email on their device
  • Google searches increased 130% in Q3 2011
  • Smartphone sales surpassed PC sales in Q4 2010
  • The average smartphone user visits 24 websites per day

But what does that have to do with my retirement consulting or wealth management website?  Let me paint a few pictures where mobile may become a factor...

  1. You’ve just been introduced to a prospective client named Joe by a friend at the country club.  Joe is not happy with his current financial advisor and is looking to move.  While Joe is now waiting for his tee time, he pulls out his smartphone to learn a little more about you.  He types in the URL from your business card, and is now getting a long-lasting first impression of your company on a mobile device.
  2. An existing client Mary has been with your company for years.  She enjoys your quarterly newsletters, as it helps her keep in touch with the changing market and her fiduciary responsibilities.  But Mary is very busy running a company, and lately has only been checking her email on her phone and iPad.  She opens your newsletter in her email, which links to more information on your website.  She now finds herself on your website reading your newsletter from her iPad.
  3. Greg is a prospective client who was recently referred by another client.  He is coming into your office to meet with you in person for the first time.  But he’s running late, and can’t remember your address.  He pulls out his smartphone to look it up, and now finds himself on your website searching for address.

These are, of course, just a few scenarios where users might find themselves on your website from a mobile device.  And as mobile usage grows, and it will, these scenarios will change from the exception to the norm.  Are you ready for the change?  Is your website?  

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