Abstracts: August 28th, 2013

As more people access council websites through mobiles a survey shows that visitor satisfaction is falling.

The survey by the Society of IT Management shows that the percentage of visits from mobile devices averaged 27.4% for the first five months of 2013, with January recording the highest numbers to data at 28.8%. It appears that the higher the number of total visits, the higher the percentage from mobile devices -in January severe weather led to high levels of council website visits overall.

Trends in mobile usage seen in the Socitm data are in line with evidence of growing use of mobiles for accessing the internet. The briefing quotes several sources, including Ofcom, which says that 92% of UK adults personally own/use a mobile phone and 39% use their mobile handset to access the internet. Other figures show that nearly two thirds of the UK adult population will have a smartphone by 2016.

As mobile access increases user experience is declining. Visit failure is on average 13% higher when mobile devices are used, with visitor satisfaction is on average 11% lower. Up to 20% of mobile survey respondents say they will not use their mobile devices again for accessing council websites.

These findings are in line with results of the ‘mystery shopping’ of council mobile websites reported in Better connected 2013, in which just 15% of council sites met the Socitm’s standard for mobile access. Clearly, says the briefing, the typical mobile experience currently leaves something to be desired.

The briefing goes on to explore options facing councils looking to improve users’ mobile experience.

The mobile experience: some feedback from council websites is published by Socitm and can be downloaded here.