For mobile websites, fast loading is more important than looks

BBC-on-mobile-phone Recently, the marketing research company InsightExpress Research conducted a poll to identify the reasons why mobile users come back to a website that they already visited. The poll revealed that the loading time is the most important criterion.

Navigation usability and the quality of the content are the second and third most important factors, but a distinction must be made between smartphone users and people who use regular mobile phones with Internet features.

This latter type of device has indeed less navigation features, which makes users of such devices choose navigation usability as the second decisive factor, after the loading time. For smartphone users, who are often able to easily browse through web pages and zoom (in and out), the quality of the content is the second most important criterion to come back to a website.
The following factors were unimportant for both categories: the presence of advertisements, the possibility to personalise a page, and the amount of links, videos or images, as long as they do not increase the loading time.

This is an important point for advertisers. The mobile web offers them a unique chance to spread the word. Very often, there is indeed only one advertisement per mobile web page, and it generally takes more screen space on the mobile device than on a regular computer. All this increases the chance to spread the word.