With 39% of retail mobile sites losing sales, maybe there is a case for .mobi

Way back when .Mobi was the flavor of the month and the only .whatever in town, some pointed out that the extension was not needed because many websites just use a m.website redirect. The logic held true and for the most part many sites just used a m.site redirect which kind of made the need for a .mobi seem less and less. I am not stating there is a need now, but an article I read that dealt with the m.site redirect and its shortcomings took me back to the days of .mobi debate. So we are clear on transparency I own no .mobi domains and have zero ownership in any .mobi related business.

Now many years later since the initial launch of .mobi more developers who focus on mobile have focused on making their website mobile responsive. CopyBlogger explains that, A responsive website automatically changes to fit the device you’re reading it on. Typically, there have been four general screen sizes that responsive design has been aimed at: the widescreen desktop monitor, the smaller desktop (or laptop), the tablet, and the mobile phone.

It seems there are still many eRetailers who are using the  m.site redirect, and it is costing them business according to one study.

There was a study conducted by Web optimization firm Yottaa that reveals that 150 of the top 500 eretailers still have a unique m-dot site.

Mobile Commerce Daily covered this analysis and wrote the following:

Yottaa’s analysis reveals that 39 percent of the top 500 retailers’ mobile sites redirect users an average of 3.03 times. One out of 10 of the top Internet retail sites redirects users three or more times.

Such redirects add seconds to page loads for these retailers.

Mobile sites with four redirects make users wait more than 16 seconds until a site renders. This is eight seconds longer compared to sites with no mobile redirects.

These redirects are happening primarily because of inconsistencies or workarounds on the back-end of sites.

According to Yottaa’s preliminary data testing the top 500 retail sites, it takes more than 10 seconds to render the average site on an iPhone using 3G connectivity. The time it takes to display the page completely clocks in at more than 20 seconds.

Mobile first
Ideally, a Web site using an m-dot Web address on a mobile device would jump directly from its base URL to the unique mobile version in just one step.

Other key findings include that there was only a one second difference between sites with one redirect and those with three.

You can read the full article here

Of course some sites are still using a .mobi for their mobile website, with the World Cup I was constantly checking lines with BetVictor an online sportsbook, I was always using my laptop but was out yesterday and wanted to see the money line for Germany right before the start, when I typed in BetVictor.com on my iPhone, I was redirected to BetVictor.mobi. So mobi fans some active websites out there are still using the extension, it was the first one I came across in a while so I took note.

{ 5 comments… add one }

  • Jim Holleran July 14, 2014, 6:44 pm

    Thank god were not at least talking about .xyz and what a fraud that is.

  • Kassey July 14, 2014, 8:36 pm

    Why not just implement mobile-first design and let users redirect to desktop mode if needed?

  • Domains Gains July 14, 2014, 8:53 pm

    Interesting reading, thank you!
    I own some .mobi domains, and strongly believe that they have a role to play.
    Considering peoples’ names: how about building a simple john.mobi site (example) as an easy to remember business/personal card?
    As there’s only one john.mobi domain, the extension would become very valuable…

  • Michael July 14, 2014, 10:15 pm

    I made my bako site responsive, read a book on how to do it and it’s not that hard plus it’s pretty cool. You can do some really complex things with it and I am sure it will only get better and HTML5 does even more cool stuff for mobile web sites. I have a bunch of other web site I am working on that I want to do it to also. No need to redirect anymore!

  • Caesars Web November 18, 2015, 4:59 am

    It seems nobody legit uses .mobi anymore. Responsive web or just serving a mobile version of the content and problem solved.
    Nobody cool here