In June 2010, about 420 million of Chinese people were using the Internet making China the biggest Internet market in the world. Whilst a 60-year-old westerner struggles to order a camera on a computer, his Chinese doppelganger orders on an iPad with relative ease.
In June 2010, about 420 million of Chinese people were using the Internet making China the biggest Internet market in the world. Whilst a 60-year-old westerner struggles to order a camera on a computer, his Chinese doppelganger orders on an iPad with relative ease. Many Chinese consumers went straight from using the phone to using the Internet while Westerners used the Internet before using smartphones. Chinese had to catch-up with new technologies such as smartphones or tablets, without using the previous forms of the Internet like the Internet Dial-up or the WAP, which forced them to adapt faster than Westerners.
Why Your Site Needs To Be Mobile Compatible
We often talk about the importance of Social Media and online presence in China but we tend to forget how Mobile Optimization is just as important. Unlike in the West, Chinese spend a huge amount time on their smartphone. In fact, 55% of the Chinese users total media consumption time is spent on mobile Internet, compared to 38% for the US. It is very common to see Chinese people watching a TV Show on the subway or during lunch.
A mobile optimized website is basically a website adapted to the size of a smaller screen which implies a different CSS (Cascading Style Sheets). Just like a standard website, the mobile optimized one should answer to users’ expectations. Expectations depend on your group target characteristics: gender, age, culture, social status, and profession. However, brands have to think about how to rearrange their content in order to make it easy to navigate in adding tabs more then clickable buttons or in columns. 67% of mobile users who land on a mobile optimized website would more likely stay on the website and it has been proven that a non-mobile optimized website would make users go on competitors website that has an adapted website. Indeed, ergonomics is an important factor in attracting users to a website. It includes two components, which are usability and effectiveness. A user will stay on a website if it is comfortable, easy to navigate to have the less (visual) fatigue possible. An Internet user uses its thumb to search for answers, therefore, he/she would need to access the information within two clicks.
Why would a brand develop a mobile optimized website when it can just have a WeChat service account? It is said that WeChat is an essential social media, although, it should not be the only online presence in China. This, for several reasons: First of all, even though WeChat owns an important number of users, it is difficult to be as creative as you could be on your own website, in terms of colors, layout and fonts. Now, there are a few differences between Western and Chinese standard websites. For example, for the design, Chinese website tolerate or even appreciate web banners/pop-ups on websites. While westerners will run away from a site overwhelmed with website advertising, Chinese users are used to it and more tolerant. East Asian websites will more likely use bright/primary colors as eye-catcher such as red, blue, green and yellow. Then, whilst Westerners appreciate clean and understated content, Chinese would be culturally different. Here is a simple comparison: Western people start a meal with appetizers, then eat the main courses and finish with deserts whereas Chinese would eat and share different dishes at the same time. Cultural behaviors are reflected on online behaviors.
A mobile optimized website is strongly advised if you wish to break into the Chinese market using it as a complimentary online platform. Brands reach their target groups where they are and accompany consumers by linking their brand image to what their markets like. Chinese consumers are more active on smartphones and are inclined to search for brands information online. A mobile-optimized website is one of the answers to an effective entry on the market.