Growing legal practices understand the power the Internet to bring in new clientele. Today more and more people are searching the net with smart phones and tablets.
A mobile version of a website is designed with the smaller screens, slower download speeds and data usage in mind. Mobile sites make use of minimized graphics and reduced images images along with specific layout parameters.
When users try to visit a site from a mobile devise the website is programmed to recognize the type of devise that is trying to access the site. Smart phones and tablets are automatically routed to the mobile version of the website.
Below is a an article from Lexis Nexis that has some great data about the explosion of the mobile market.
Mar 19, 2012 09:00 AM by Samantha Miller
New research confirms what many of us suspected — the mobile market is exploding. And for law firms, especially solos and small firms with two to five GPs, a mobile-compliant website is now an absolute must.
In February, global technology analyst Canalys released its 2011 sales report and the numbers are staggering. For the first time in history, smart phone sales exceeded PCs. In total, Canalys says, vendors shipped 488 million Smartphones in 2011, compared to 414 million PCs, including tablets.
Separate out the tablets and Smartphone sales trumped PCs by an even greater margin, 488 million to 351 million. Even more impressive is that some 63 million portable tablets were sold – up an astonishing 274 percent over 2010 sales.
And what exactly are all these people doing with their mobile devices? Searching the web.
- In the US, mobile searches have quadrupled in the last year, according to Google. For many items, one in seven searches is now mobile.
- One in three mobile searches, Google also reports, are local. After looking up a local business on their Smartphone, 61 percent of users called the business and 59 percent visited.
- Just prior to last year’s holiday season, a mobiThinking.com mobile shopping study predicted “29 percent of users will look to mobile devices to learn about new products or services, 27 percent will use their handset when making a purchasing decision and 15 percent of shoppers will use their mobile device to make a purchase while in a store.”
Think about it. If consumers are happily searching for deals, coupons and/or restaurants on their Smartphone while standing in the middle of a crowded shopping mall, how do you think they’ll search for a local attorney or law firm if they’re involved in an accident on the way home?
Indeed, research by Performics summarizes the trend: 75 percent of heavy mobile users said mobile search makes their lives easier; 63 percent said access to mobile search has changed the way they gather information; and 32 percent said they use mobile search more than search engines on their computers.
We’re nearing a tipping point in the way consumers gather information – and that includes the way they research legal topics and look for lawyers. With Smartphone and tablet sales surging, mobile browsing will continue to surge as well. Solo or small law firms had better have a website that’s easy to navigate, regardless of the mobile device, or they’ll be left behind.