Tips to be Mobiletastic: Part 3
Tip 4 in this series on how to be mobiletastic is: Performance Kills. I know it sounds dire, but I mean it with the best of intentions.
Performance kills because we have a lot of different companies delivering mobile optimized websites, or app experiences, or both to the consumer. When it works, people engaged in a mobile experience are excited and happy because everything is going as anticipated. The carrier signal is delivering the data (the content) to the phone. We know what to do. We know how to do it. We know where to go. So, now, we’re excited and feel empowered because our expectations were met and we were able to accomplish our goal. We’re happy. Better yet, we’re satisfied.
The reality of it is, however, sadness does exist in the mobile content consumption space. Somewhere along the line the signal loses itself and your site is broken. If you think about it and there’s this person trying to engage your mobile site for content and they can’t get it, who are they going to blame? One of the carriers (AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, etc.)? The phone manufacturer (Samsung, Apple, etc.)? When a call gets dropped we blame the carrier, and rightfully so. Recently there has been a great distinction over who is to ultimately blame for a failed mobile experience. The fact is that it resides with you – the company producing the mobile experience. Whether it’s your fault or not, it will always be your fault from the consumer’s perspective if it is an unsatisfying experience. And who really loses out on the bad experience? Sure the customer is disappointed. But, if they are unable to make a purchase or view a video asset, it’s you – your company’s bottom line – that’s the real loser.
The truth of it is, I can tell you beyond a shadow of a doubt that when somebody is engaged with your mobile experience and it doesn’t work for them…it’s all your fault.
Let me reiterate: IT IS ALL YOUR FAULT. No matter whose fault it actually is, in your customer’s view, it is all your fault.
For example, I went the BBC website to get an update on English Premier League soccer – go Fulham! – and it didn’t work. That’s awful. That makes me very, very sad. But, whose fault is it? From my perspective the blame falls to BBC of course, because their mobile optimized site simply didn’t work for me. Another example is when I went to London a few months back. I don’t know anything about London and I needed to find out where to go in the tube. So I broke out my handy internet-capable smartphone to look up a map in an app, and I get this message: Internet connectivity is required to use this feature. No kidding. Really? Thank you for telling me. Why didn’t you download some vrsion of it asynchronously so I could at least try to help myself. Not even an apology…
So, the solution for Tip 4: Performance Kills is: for every single error message you have rendered, customize it. This allows for the human component. Something as simple as that can change the customer experience. A good example is when I recently tried to download the most recent weekend closures. This is the message I received: Sorry, I could not get the latest weekend closures from the server. An internet connection is required.
Huh. Here, we have an apology – it says SORRY – and uses a personal pronoun. This is a very interesting and a much-more personal approach. This is the ultimate one-to-one connection that you can and should have with your customers. You have to remember that the individuals who are trying to get content about your business are people. So look at all of the error messages associated with your mobile sites and apps and be clear with the empathy associated with the experience. This will go a long way in creating a more positive customer experience, because satisfied customers are more loyal, more likely to make a purchase, more likely to return to your site, and more likely to recommend your company, site, app to others.
Measuring satisfaction can pinpoint trouble spots in your company as a whole or by channel that need improvement so you can make sound business decisions.
When I talk about Mobiletastic Tip 5: Connecting the Dots – the final chapter, I’ll explain how the mobile experience interacts and is interacted by other channels offered by your company. In the meantime, check out Tips #1 & #2 (Welcome Them to Your Mobile Home and Challenge Convention), and Tip #3 (Measure, Measure, Measure).