I spend a lot of time on my iPad now, and while I’m searching, reading and buying, I pay close attention to what works and what doesn’t. I want to use my “hands on” experience with consumer sites to make my clients’ B2B sites better. What works for consumer sites works for B2B, too.
In this Response Magazine article, Consumer Electronics Market: Toying with Tablets, for which I was interviewed, reporter Jackie Jones talks about the rise of iPads and how they’ve given marketers a plethora of opportunities to connect with consumers.
A couple of takeaways for B2B marketers:
1. Mobile devices untether us from our desks. I know this is a “duh” thing, but what this means is that we’re spending more time accessing information from our devices — and this information needs to be mobile friendly and instantly accessible.
“The common factor [of what people can do with iPads / tablets] is the real-time sense of immediacy that comes with the modern consumer’s drive to purchase, a trend buoyed by the instant access and on-the-go capabilities afforded by tablet devices,” says Jones. “Most industry experts agree this puts more control in the consumers’ hands, and marketers must meet their customers literally wherever they go now.”
I know that for me, having the iBooks app built right into the iPad has made is *super easy* to buy books. It’s so easy, I haven’t visited my local library in weeks. In addition, I find it very easy to make purchases for consumer goods — provided the consumer site is mobile-friendly. Surprisingly, some still aren’t.
2. Mobile devices have their own challenges.
It’s not enough to test your site across the different browsers. You must also test it on various devices, including smartphones and tablets /iPad.
We’ve been trained to want everything now — if a site loads too slowly or a video is too long, we just click right back out. Ensuring your customers can access your site no matter which device they’re using or where they’re located improves the customer experience — and ultimately sales.
If you don’t have an iPad or a tablet on which to test your site, go visit an Apple store and play around with one of the many devices on display. No one will mind.
Be sure to read Jackie Jones’ article — you’ll find it full of excellent tips from marketers.