The Impact of Redesigning for Mobile: An Update

About six weeks ago, I posted a profile of mobile traffic to the Magellan site. Working with our design partner, Dave Ross, we had reconfigured the site toward the end of January to support reflowable content to mobile devices.

In the month after we launched the new design, the share of site visits from mobile made up about 27% of all traffic. In the last few weeks, the share has fallen slightly (to 24%) but remains relatively constant from day to day.

On March 11, the majority of traffic to a post about “the seven deadly myths of mobile” came from mobile sources. It probably didn’t hurt that the post was written at and about a session I heard at South by Southwest.

More recently (March 25, a Sunday) mobile visits made up almost half of the traffic to a post on “the future of mobile“. Lesson learned: if you want to drive mobile traffic, write about mobile.

(Okay, that may not be quite the lesson to learn.)

Mobile page views per visit remain about a third lower than those for other platforms. Time spent on site, while higher than was the case in January, is about two-thirds lower when the source is mobile.

Part of the divide reflects a moving target: since the redesign, non-mobile time on site (up 40%) and page views per visit (up 15%) have improved substantially. The lag in mobile engagement may reflect the bare-bones navigation used there.

We’re continuing to tweak the mobile presentation of our content. Sporadic feedback has been positive, but I’d like to see more consistent engagement from visitors who come to us on mobile platforms. Look for another update later this spring.

Brian O'Leary

About Brian O'Leary

Founder and principal of Magellan Media Consulting, Brian O’Leary helps enterprises with media and publishing components capitalize on the power of content. A veteran of more than 30 years in the publishing industry and a prolific content producer himself, Brian leverages the breadth and depth of his experience to deliver innovative content solutions.