We’ve reached an important tipping point in how mobile is being used. Blackbaud has reported recently that mobile conversions last year reached a new record, with 19 percent of donations and 23 percent of event registrations made from a mobile device. In my own work with nonprofits of various sizes, I’m seeing email readership rates of 40 percent from mobile devices.
1. More Supporters and Donors Read Your Newsletters on Small Screens
Mobile use is at an all-time high.Churches of all sizes must consider the impact and the opportunity to better engage with their members, donors, and visitiors through smartphones with small screens or tablet devices.
2. An Opportunity to Grab Their Attention
Screen size aside, the issue here is attention span opportunity. People are reading your email or seeing your social media posts at all times of the day, when it’s most convenient for them. This could be during their morning commute, between two meetings, while waiting in line for a lunch order, or during a focused time when they’re cleaning out their inbox.
3. Rethink and Redesign the Experience
This new reality of mobile use means nonprofits need to rethink and redesign the mobile experience that they’re offering. Declining click-through rates on emails and lower conversion rates on online content can be reversed and energized through a focused effort to seize the mobile opportunity.
4. Make Mobile Simple, Direct, and Quick
Mobile design and mobile user experience are simple, direct, and quick. Fonts are larger and buttons are easier to click. Single column designs offer a simple browsing experience with clearer and fewer choices for the reader. After a click from an email or social media post, you need a landing on a web page that is also a mobile-friendly experience.
5. Optimize Your Basic Email Format
Consider your basic email formats that you may be using to communicate regularly with your email and newsletter subscribers. Your basic email template should have a lean, single-column design, with minimal branding and navigation at the top, so that viewers can quickly assess the content and the ask.
Images should be small in size and zoomed in enough for smaller screens. Clickable buttons should be easy to find and large enough to touch.
6. Investigate What Your Email Looks Like on Mobile Devices
Use an email usability testing service such as Email on Acid or Litmus to determine how your email will look on a variety of mobile devices. If needed, discuss the mobile design of your email templates with your email service provider, so you can understand the options available to you.
7. Offer Fewer and More Direct Choices in Emails
Take this moment to simplify the content of your email communications so that you are offering fewer and more direct choices to your readers. We do ourselves a disservice and frustrate our readers when email messages are too long and have too many links to content on the web. Emails with dozens of clickable options may seem clever however, the reality of real-world mobile experience is that people checking their email while picking up their lunch order only have time for one or two choices at most.
8. What Happens After the Click?
The final opportunity to consider is what happens after the click from an email or social media post. Web landing pages also need to be mobile friendly, which may require a deeper rethink of your website and any registration pages you may use with your various online services. A top priority is web landing pages that are arrived at from clicking on links in your emails and your social media posts.
Don’t forget that video shines within mobile friendly designs. Video plays a unique role with mobile messaging and will really stand out within mobile-friendly designs. Embedded videos can easily be enlarged, rotated, and viewed, thereby making the most of your mobile design template.
The mobile experience means respecting and harnessing the attention span that an individual has given you for that precious moment. What you get in return is the opportunity to deepen your engagement with people, which is your most critical goal