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Google's 3 Essentials for Mobile-Friendly Websites

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If you've been on the fence about creating a mobile-friendly version of your website, Google has some insight that might help you make the decision.

Sixty-seven percent of the 1,088 smartphone users surveyed by the tech giant in July said they were more likely to make a purchase when visiting a business's mobile-friendly site, versus 61 percent who said they'd most likely leave a site that wasn't optimized for mobile. Translation: if you don't have a mobile-friendly website then you're probably losing customers to the competition.

The survey, "What Users Want Most From Mobile Sites Today," was conducted for Google by independent market research firms Sterling Research and SmithGeiger. 

Related: No Mobile Website? You're Probably Turning Customers Away

A site that's optimized for mobile can be viewed easily on smaller screens and also displays important company information without complicated navigation. According to Google, mobile-friendly sites can pay off in two ways: users are more likely to be active when visiting the site and they are more likely to return to the site in the future.

Conversely, fifty-two percent of people surveyed said a bad mobile experience makes them less likely to engage with a company. And, 48 percent said that if a site didn't work well on their smartphones, it made them think the company didn't care about their business.

So what exactly are customers looking for from a mobile-friendly website? Here are three points Google highlights its survey:

1. Fast loading. That means 5 seconds or less.
2. Mobile-friendly features. These can include large buttons, easy search and limited scrolling and pinching.
3. Quick access to business information. Display info like directions, contact numbers, product information and how to make a purchase right up front so it's easy to read on a smartphone or tablet.

Related: How to Make Your Site Mobile-Friendly with 'Responsive Design'

How important do you think a mobile-friendly website is to doing business? Let us know in the comments below.
 

Jason Fell is the managing editor of Entrepreneur.com.

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