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How to find out if your website is mobile-friendly (and what to do if it's not)

The Mobile Revolution has been picking up speed over the last 18 months. In fact, two major recent events should cause every insurance agent to step up his or her mobile game.

The first milestone represents an epic shift online:

In 2014 mobile internet usage surpassed desktop internet usage, according to a recent comScore study.

More people now use their mobile devices to go online than their computers.

Wikipedia describes a mobile device as “a small computing device, typically small enough to be handheld and having a display screen with touch input and/or a miniature keyboard and weighing less than 2 pounds.”

The second milestone occurred in April 2015, when Google released a major mobile-friendly update to its ranking algorithm. The purpose of this update was to reward mobile-friendly websites. Here's the announcement Google made:

"Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices."

For these reasons, it's critical agents understand mobile websites if they want to continue to be relevant online. Leading insurance marketing experts agree.

Michael Jans, CEO of Agency Revolution and 20-year insurance marketing veteran, says, "Digital marketing is about being and staying connected to the 'connected consumer,' and that's just about everyone. The connected world changes quickly, and today, that means you must have a mobile website."

Joshua Nadler, founder of Awesurance, a marketing firm for insurance agencies, says, "It's imperative that independent insurance agents have a mobile-friendly site, now more than ever. Otherwise they are losing out on large, double-digit percentages of Web traffic -- and this trend is just going to continue to increase over time."

In this article you'll learn:

  • How to find out how much mobile traffic you get.
  • How find out if your website is mobile-friendly.
  • What to do if your website is not mobile-friendly.

Want to know how much mobile traffic you get?

According to the 2014 Mobile Media Consumption Report, the average mobile web user consumes 6.0 hours of media per day! But we know they're not spending all, or even most, of that time on insurance sites (sorry).

So to see exactly how much traffic your agency gets, take a peek inside your Google Analytics account. Here's how:

  1. Log in to your Google Analytics account.
  2. Click the Audience menu on the left side.
  3. Click Mobile, which will open a sub-menu. Select Overview.

Now you can see how much of your website's traffic is desktop, mobile or tablet and how much time they spend on your site.

By the way, if you don’t already have Google Analytics setup on your website it would be a good idea to set this up now. Google Analytics is a free web analytics service offered by Google that tracks and reports your website traffic.

Is your website mobile-friendly? Find out now

If you want to find out if your website is mobile-friendly, then simply use Google's Mobile-Friendly Test tool:

  1. Visit https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/.
  2. Enter your URL.
  3. Click Analyze.
  4. Wait about 30 to 60 seconds while Google analyzes your page.

You will either see a message that says:

Awesome! This page is mobile-friendly.

Or:

Not mobile-friendly.

If your site fails the test, the tool will also tell you a few reasons why, such as:

  • Text too small.
  • Links too close together.
  • Mobile viewport not set.

Google's Mobile-Friendly Test does not scan your whole website, which is composed of many Web pages. It simply scans the specific Web page you type in to determine if that page is mobile-friendly.

What to do if you failed the mobile-friendly test

If your site passed the Mobile-Friendly Test, congratulations! If it failed, don't beat yourself up. Simply decide to make your website mobile-friendly now.

If you're like most agents, this can feel like an overwhelming task. But it doesn't have to be. Here are some questions to help guide you through the process.

Do you use WordPress already?

If you're using WordPress, then the transition to a mobile-friendly website can be relatively easy. This free website-creation tool utilizes something called "themes." A theme is a tool that helps you dictate the design and functionality of your website without you having to change the underlying website code.

Many agents decide to simply buy a mobile-responsive theme instead of building a website from scratch.

Here are some examples of popular mobile-responsive themes:

You may need to make some simple updates to the design or content of your website after installing the theme, but this is usually a lot less work than building a new website.

If you don't use WordPress, do you want to switch to WordPress now?

If you don't currently use WordPress and your website is not mobile-friendly, then this could be a great time to switch to WordPress. Consider using one of its mobile-friendly themes.

If you don't want WordPress, do you want to build a mobile website?

If you decide WordPress is not right for your agency, then you may want to consider building a mobile website. If you're on a tight budget, this can be done for less than $30 a month by using a service such as bMobilized or Duda Mobile.

Here's a brief description of each service:

bMobilized: this New York-based mobile website company offers small businesses a way to convert their existing website into a mobile-optimized site. Cost is $8 to $24 per month. They also offer a free 14-day trial.

Duda:(formerly DudaMobile) is a company based out of Palo Alto, Cali. Like bMobilized, they also offer a service that will convert your existing website into a mobile-optimized site. They have a free version (but your site will feature Duda ads) or ad-free plans ranging from $5 to $29 a month. They also offer a free 30-day trial.

As you can see, there are several options out there to help make your website mobile-friendly. Whether you choose to use a responsive design on WordPress or built a separate mobile website, the main thing is that you make your website mobile-friendly ASAP.

By making your website mobile-friendly, you can attract more visitors from online searches and provide a better experience when visitors arrive at your site.

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