Context just may be the most important buzzword of the moment when it comes to user experience on the web and in mobile platforms. CoreMedia conducted an independent study, which surveyed over 1,100 German and U.S. internet users, with the aim of providing insight into consumer satisfaction with digital experience across several key areas, including website personalization and mobile platforms.
The CoreMedia survey found that companies are failing to meet expectations for the majority of consumers, with 56% indicating they do not feel as though website content is tailored to their personal needs or preferences. When asked to identify their preferences for online experiences, 69% of respondents chose the ability to quickly find what they are searching for as the top priority. Almost a quarter of the respondents selected websites that easily adapted to current needs, and 14% of survey respondents identified being able to comment, recommend, or retweet as taking precedence.
That many websites — especially corporate sites — are still struggling with personalization is hardly a surprise, but it’s a bit more surprising to see mobile struggling with this. It would seem that context has been the name of the game for awhile. Over a third of respondents felt most sites are often difficult to read on a mobile device, and 40% said they do not regularly access mobile sites because it is too complicated. 24% felt most mobile sites are missing the functionality that one finds on websites when accessed via a PC.
EContent addressed the challenges of mobile strategy in our March issue with a great article by Jessica Dye. She wrote:
Designing suitable content for an increasingly diverse array of devices and platforms requires a comprehensive upfront strategy that brings together delivery and context to create more value for the user. In turn it creates more value for the company behind it, according to Peggy Anne Salz, chief analyst and founder of MSearchGroove.
“People shouldn’t believe it’s just another screen,” Salz says. “You have to consider the experience. If we’re going to be consuming content across time, space, and platforms, what are you going to do with the platform? You also have to think about how to slice and dice the content for various experiences-you can’t just put all the content on mobile the same way it looks on the web site. You have to think about how people are going to want to interact with it.”
The possibilities for mobile personalization are nearly limitless. Companies need to start thinking more about a comprehensive web user experience — considering how desktop and mobile sites work together to present an overall experience for users. Your users are used to logging into Facebook, where their web experiences is dictated by the context of information they have provided, that Facebook has extracted from their profiles, and settings the users have customized. If you want to compete with that, it’s going to take a whole lot of planning.