How B2B marketers can make a good mobile impression.

In a recent blog, “Writing B2B email subject lines with complete confidence,” I reported on a session I attended at the October 2012 Direct Marketing Association Conference. In it, the presenter, Jay Schwedelson, President & CEO of Worldata, made it very clear that every email and Website today must be mobile-friendly.

Christopher Wallace, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Amsterdam Printing, a promotional products specialty company, heartily supports that edict. Recently, he explained why:

“When I was a child learning how to fish, I remember my grandfather always reminding me to ‘set the hook.’ That’s a lesson that’s followed me into my career, and one that applies to any B2B marketing plan.

When B2B marketers put out the right bait to attract a prospect to their site and the site is not mobile-friendly, the hook can’t be set.”

Having visitors come to a B2B marketing site only to find that the margins are cut off at the sides or the dropdown menu links are difficult to click immediately defeats the momentum the marketing has initiated. These problems are enough to make a bad first impression on the prospect — which is the last thing any B2B marketer would want to do.

Making B2B Websites mobile friendly may sound like a monumental effort. However, Wallace suggests that, while a company’s developer is working on the new mobile platform, there are a growing number of online mobile site design and management portals B2B marketers can use to make this conversion quickly. Here are his suggestions:

Once the king of do-it-yourself Flash sites, Wix has managed to adapt to the times (including the continued Flash-averseness of Apple’s iOS). Instead of reworking an existing site for mobile, Wix creates an alternate site that’s designed specifically for devices. A company’s domain remains the same and the device automatically redirects users. If B2B marketers are creating a new mobile site to accompany their physical one, the cost is about $15 a month for 2.5GB of storage, unlimited bandwidth, tech support, and a free domain (if needed).

MoFuse has grown itself into a major player in the mobile design front, with clients ranging from NFL teams to the U.S. Department of State. Clients can design their own site with drag-and-drop pictures and text, or let MoFuse build it for them to their specifications. It’s easy to include simple buttons and a space for visitors to enter data using a simple form builder. Pay is via a monthly subscription — with a basic plan starting at $39/month.

A suitable option for many businesses is to convert their existing site to mobile. This service digs into a company’s existing site code, images, and links, optimizing them for various mobile sizes (and setting up a redirect when different devices access the site). Because it’s a one-time fee of around $300, rather than a monthly subscription, it’s an excellent ‘quick fix’ for many companies with a simple site that experiences glitches on some mobile devices.

B2B companies should not wait to optimize their site for mobile. Making a good first impression in this competitive B2B marketing environment is everything.