It might not seem so long ago that our houses were worth more than our mortgages and political coups were started by militaries, not messages broadcast in 140 characters or less.
But since the first smartphones hit stores in 2007, it has become ever more difficult to remember a world without mobile.
About a quarter of web traffic now comes from mobile devices, and that percentage will only grow as the incredible convenience of smartphones and tablets leaves stationary systems collecting dust.
Here are a few things you can do to make sure your small business isn’t left behind in the mobile revolution.
Get your website mobile-ready
Make sure your business’s website is mobile-friendly.
Access your site on a mobile device and look through it to evaluate how easy it is to read and navigate.
Many sites can be difficult or near-impossible to use from a mobile device, especially from the small screen of a smartphone.
You can also have a specific mobile site that mobile devices will be automatically redirected to, but be careful that the redirection is well-designed.
Few things are as frustrating as attempting to follow a link to a specific webpage, but then being redirected to the mobile site’s home page instead of the content desired.
Market to mobile
Get familiar with the variety of marketing opportunities offered by mobile devices.
There are far more opportunities to effectively market on mobile devices than simply advertising via banner ads in game apps.
For instance, many mobile users take advantage of coupons they can access directly from their phone while shopping.
Take advantage of mobile-friendly vehicles
There are many tools that mobile users access frequently from their phones that you can use to your benefit.
Having a strong social media presence is especially helpful for reaching mobile users, since most prominent social media platforms have user-friendly apps that users regularly access anyway, making them a convenient way to promote your business within a medium your target market already uses.
Also, if your business has a physical location, make sure you are well-marked and easy to find on map applications, as many people use their maps to discover and locate local businesses.
Accept mobile payments
Mobile payments are an easy way to make your business more customer-friendly; especially if your business is physically mobile, such as a professional cleaning or pet-grooming service.
There are a variety of apps and attachments available to turn your phone or tablet into a credit card-processing machine.
You can easily accept plastic payments from customers and issue them a receipt via email – from anywhere!
Stay ahead of the curve
Smartphones and tablets are the present, but the future of mobile is fast approaching.
Keep informed about upcoming technological advances.
One advancement that has the mobile industry buzzing is wearable technology, from glasses to watches to articles of clothing.
As these forms of mobile technology become more prevalent, there will be more ways to promote your business and put it within easy access of potential and existing customers.
Keeping up with the trends will ensure that your business has an extra edge in the competitive world of the mobile advancement.
Ked Harley is a writer and researcher for Biz2Credit Business Loans, a leading credit marketplace connecting small- and medium-sized businesses with small business loans, service providers, and complementary business tools. She is also a self-confessed coffee addict working out of New York City. Her interests include business and finance, world news, food, and travel, and she enjoys yoga and running in the park. Follow Biz2Credit on Twitter for small business news and updates.