If your website isn't ready to meet the unique needs of mobile traffic, you're likely losing out on new customers in Arkansas, even if you're doing other Arkansas-focused digital marketing.
Arkansas Website Design Needs to be Mobile-Friendly
Connectivity to broadband internet in Arkansas is still behind that of many other states, forcing many Arkansans to use their smartphones as their primary or sole internet connection. For Arkansas businesses and Arkansas web design, this has a huge impact on the kinds of websites we need to create.
According to a 2015 internet connectivity study, the peak speed of Arkansas internet connections is only 35Mbps, only beating out Kentucky's fastest speeds by 1Mbps. This study uses peak speeds, or the average of absolute highest speeds statewide. Needless to say, high speeds in areas like Little Rock affect the average peak speed. Rural areas of Arkansas may be well below this peak speed.
For many Arkansas customers your business is targeting, internet speeds are prohibitively slow and expensive just outside of major areas. Many Arkansans turn to their mobile devices for reliable, affordable internet connections.
One in ten Americans nationwide do not have broadband access at home but have a smartphone, according to Pew Research. This is particularly true for young Arkansans, 15% of whom are smartphone dependent for their internet usage. While we couldn't find study information specific to Arkansas, we predict that smartphone dependency percentages are much higher due to lack of connectivity in our state.
Needless to say, your Arkansas business needs a mobile-friendly website design more than other states because your users are even more likely to be on a smartphone than other areas of the country.
Google Gives Advantage to Mobile Arkansas Web Design
On top of our specific needs in Arkansas, Google places priority on mobile-friendly websites in a number of ways. They've also recently announced they will be placing even more priority on mobile-friendliness start in May 2016. If your business isn't mobile-friendly now, it's well past the time change to your website design because Google is likely giving your competition the advantage.
There are a number of new developments from Google, Facebook, Pinterest and other internet giants that place priority on mobile-friendly websites. We anticipate mobile-friendly signals and website features to become more important over the next year. This includes some of the following factors:
- Focus on quicker load times - We're seeing an increase in instant load times with new features like Accelerated Mobile Pages and Facebook's Instant Articles.
- Focus on mobile-friendliness - Google and other internet giants are increasing the priority they're giving to website with mobile-friendly pages across all screen sizes (mobile-only design won't cut it anymore).
- Focus on consumer-facing labels - Last year Google implemented mobile-friendly labels in their search engine results that impact consumer awareness of mobile-friendly websites.
In conclusion, if your website is serving clients in Arkansas, you need to be mobile-ready. If not, you're going to get left behind as competition updates their websites and out-of-state businesses increase their presence digitally in Arkansas. We offer free initial consultations to help you identify a roadmap towards digital marketing success and get pricing for a Arkansas website design.