Making Science

Websites Missing a Mobile Trick, Says Bango

David Murphy

Bango has announced the results of a study that it says shows that some leading PC websites are not keeping up with mobile browsing trends. When Bango surveyed the Top 20 most trafficked PC websites (based on statistics from Nielsen Online), it found that half of the sites did not work well on leading mobile phones, despite the fact that typically 5% of visitors to PC websites now come from mobile devices, up from 1% a year ago. The problem, says Bango, is that PC websites are not adapting fast enough to match mobile browsing trends and are failing to present mobile-friendly versions of their sites. 
Bango says that many online businesses it has questioned admit that they do not know how much mobile-originated traffic is hitting their PC site. Bangos research reveals that between 3-10% of online traffic to a PC website now comes from users entering web addresses on their mobile device.
Bango has responded to this trend by releasing Analytics for PCs, a plug-in tool that measures the number of mobile phone users hitting a PC web site. It also provides detailed metrics of these mobile visitors, including the percentage of mobile traffic as a unique visitor count, plus the country, network and device mobile users connect through.
Our figures indicate that up to 10 out of every 100 customers are now routinely entering web addresses from their phones and hitting a site designed only with PC users in mind, which results in a bad experience, says Bangos SVP of Marketing and Alliances, Anil Malhotra. Businesses should be asking now which handsets, countries and languages matter most to their business and developing a mobile strategy to match this.
Bango notes that some mobile network operators are routinely transcoding desktop websites to fit better on their subscribers phones. While this improves the formatting of PC web pages when viewed on a phone, Bango says it is no substitute for a properly designed mobile site, with thought given to relevant content, the right mobile feature set and easy mobile navigation. It adds that made-for mobile websites generally have a simpler layout with content thats relevant for a mobile user in the top slot on the home page.
Bango Analytics for PCs is available as part of an Early Access Program here.   
Bango surveyed the Top 20 most trafficked PC websites as published by Nielsen Online, in July 2008. Tests were carried out on the Motorola V3 Razr and Nokia 6300 on AT&T in the US and Vodafone in the UK.


PC web sites that work on mobile:
eBay www.ebay.com 
YouTube - www.youtube.com
MSN - www.msn.com
Yahoo - www.yahoo.com
Google - www.google.com
Amazon - www.amazon.com
Weather - www.weather.com
Facebook - www.facebook.com
CNN - www.cnn.com


PC web sites that dont work on mobile:
Fox - www.fox.com 
Microsoft - www.microsoft.com
Wikipedia - www.wikipedia.org
Apple - www.apple.com
About - www.about.com
Ask - www.about.ask.com
Blogger - www.blogger.com
Real Networks - www.realnetworks.com
Glam Media - www.glammedia.com
Craigslist - www.craigslist.org


The full results of the survey are available on the Bango blog.