Around 70% of all web traffic goes through mobile phones in India, making a good mobile web experience imperative to brand success, according to an expert from Google.

Indian consumers use an average 8GB of mobile data each every month, but the average speed index score for websites in India is about 55% – significantly lower than the global standard of 80% – and marketers need to prioritise a seamless mobile web experience to retain India’s savvy consumers.

“The consumer today is extremely demanding and curious, and certainly very impatient,” said Shabana Badami, head of search solutions for Google India, at the Mobile Marketing Association Forum India held in Mumbai.

“That puts us marketers in trouble because we have to now redo our technologies to be able to win these customers,” he added. (For more details, read WARC’ report: Building an effective mobile web experience in India.)

According to Badami, India’s mobile users spend 80% of their time on apps for social media interactions and gaming, and the average user regularly uses only five or six apps installed in their phone – which is where the mobile web plays an important role. While apps are clear leaders for engagement, when it comes to reach, scale and acquisition of new users, the mobile web clearly wins.

“This is very true when you want to reach people outside the Tier 1 cities – in the Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, where you are looking at a user who probably has a low-end device, limited storage and weaker connectivity, “ Badami explained.

“So getting those users to talk to your brand through the site is far easier than getting them to download an app.”

Google’s research found that even some simple, hygiene speed improvements can significantly reduce page-load time.

“It doesn’t mean the website has to be redesigned, or one has to write everything from the beginning or do advanced technologies,” Badami advised: measures such as compressing content or caching content on the user’s browser can increase speeds.

“Simple things like auto-complete suggestion can reduce search-time and the consumer can land on the desired page in the shortest possible time,” he added.

Sourced from WARC