Your mobile website is a pig

In today’s changing automotive retailing landscape, your mobile presence is of prime importance. I am talking about your own website and how it appears on a mobile device.

A separate and equally important mobile consideration is how your butler-toyota-googledealership appears in the Google Knol Graph on a mobile device. But that is a whole different subject. And we can only eat this pig one bite at a time.
If you have not or have not lately, please; no not please;
I COMMAND YOU TO VISIT YOUR WEBSITE ON YOUR PHONE !
Put your customer eyes on and move around.  Then come back and read.
DO THIS NOW.  Thank you.

Welcome back, I should have warned you beforehand, do not attempt on a full stomach.  Some of you puked, I just know it.

First things first. Landing on your homepage in a mobile environment is a different visitor experience and the visitor may have a different intent than when on a desktop version.  If your website is just a crushed down version of your desktop website it will be very hard to read and to navigate. Those disclaimers will be so tiny, no one could read them. Which means mobile visitors will abandon you very quickly.  VERY.
butler-toyota-mobileI have found that doing some heat mapping and looking at analytics helps me to understand what visitors most interested in and then I work to bring that to the surface of the mobile page right under their thumb.  Giving the quick access to your phone number with click to call or getting into your inventory quickly, to look at your vehicles.
Which brings us to navigation.  Showing all your desktop navigation is not something I would advise.  On mobile, typically the intent has less to do with
your about us page and more to do with your inventory or your location. So my
big three are click to call, inventory access and location or maps.  Maps definitely need to open up the phones navigation app.  Whichever the visitor’s preference.
Which means your Google Business Page must be up to date.  (another subject, sigh…)
Reduce any and all clutter.  Anything that will stand in the way of the visitor getting to what they came to your website for.  No use trying to divert their attention or interrupt them.  Just get the hell out of the way.  Although, I would like to see how a Sudoku puzzle would perform.  For people waiting in your Service dept.
Check your integrations.  This can be tricky because all the things on your desktop site just may not be what you want on your mobile.  Whether that is how a Carfax logo or Purecars logo displays on a VLP.  Do they take up too much space or make the listings look awkward trying to assert their presence.  Make them go away and keep your inventory clean and consumable.  Should you have chat on a mobile website? Or should it be more like text on your website.  Chat/text on mobile is something you are going to have to experiment with depending on your provider.  It is important to have, but must perform in order to get some of your valuable real-estate.
Finally, check your calls to action.  On mobile kick them up a notch.  Give clear instructions on what you want the visitor to do.  Even setting up expectations, like
“Click here to call a knowledgeable represented”.
All in on mobile is a must.  It starts with you spending time on it, understanding the visitor flow and making it a great experience for your visitors.  The phones will ring and people will show up.  Count on it.
Thank you for stopping by and taking the time to read.  I appreciate it. – Tom