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Time to Embrace Mobile

by Paulette Stout

As businesses try to hone their mobile strategy, many become dazed by the possibilities: Mobile websites? Mobile Apps? Responsive Web Design? Which to choose and when? Focus on one, or use a combination? Thus illustrates the quagmire of mobile, leading many to survey the landscape and do nothing. This inaction is reinforced by the failure of many content management systems to help solve the mobile riddle. However, the time for inaction has passed. Study after study show mobile visitors want a user experience built for them, and have little patience for those falling short. That’s why Sitefinity mobile web content management solution offers the full spectrum of mobile strategies—mobile apps, mobile websites, and Responsive Web Design—directly within the CMS to empower organizational action.

Where to Start?Time to Embrace Mobile CMS

There are two primary approaches you can take. A device specific approach means separate specialized mobile experiences are customized for each different devices.  A device agnostic approach means ONE experience that gets adapted for all devices. What you choose all depends on who is coming to your site and why. Answer that, and you’ve gone a long way towards starting on sound footing.

Mobile Options

Choosing between device specific and device agnostic  approaches will guide your decision making and ultimate development since they establish the framework best suited to your needs. Kind of like building a house:  you need to pick the style (ranch, colonial, contemporary) before you can develop architectural plans.

Within these two approaches are three strategies you can use to execute your mobile plans, Mobile Websites, Mobile Apps, and Responsive Web Design. The three are best used to certain circumstances, so it’s important to understand when is the best application for each. Let’s go back to our house example—we can heat the house in different ways: one zone for the whole house, or separate zones for each floor. If you use separate zones, you have more flexibility because you can make one floor warmer than the others, but it also requires more individualized attention with resetting the thermostats. It’s all a matter of preference, and there is no one right way.

Regardless of which of the three strategies you choose, your content management system should enable your work to provide seamless mobile experiences for your visitors:

  • Mobile Websites: Mobile websites are sites dedicated to a specific mobile device and screen size, which is good if your site has content that benefits from a specific type of device. These sites offer pared-down versions of the primary website and focus on content mobile users on-the-go are likely to want.
  • Mobile Apps: Task-focused and specific, mobile apps are a great way for you to quickly engage your customers and keep them coming back. Sitefinity is the only CMS to enable HTML5 mobile app creation as part of the content authoring experience. You can access this via the Sitefinity Module Builder, and with a few clicks, repurpose content and create a mobile app.
  • Responsive Web Design: For those wanting to repurpose one set of content to experience on any device, Responsive Web Design is the way to go. With Responsive Web Design, pre-defined rules determine how pages transform for various screen sizes. It’s extremely efficient given that you can source all transformations from the same content.

 

All approaches have their pros and cons, so sound planning is an essential first step. For a more detailed information about the available mobile strategies, how to choose, and how the right platform can help, join Sitefinity for our May 9th Webinar, “Mobile CMS Has Arrived.” See you there! 

3 comments

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  1. Rina pelelgrini May 16, 2013
        Do you have to create modules in order to generate a mobile application? I would like to generate it for an entire project.
  2. Paulette Stout May 16, 2013
    @Rina Pelelgrini
    As fabulous as I am, I'm not of the technical ilk, so I checked with the engineer team and below is the answer I received. If you need more insight, ping me at paulette.stout@telerik.com and I'll try to connect you with the right person.  Cheers!

    The Sitefinity Mobile App Builder generates applications only based on modules created with the Module Builder. If you want to create a mobile app for the entire website, then you can use the RESTful Sitefinity APIs or Cloud Services APIs to develop the mobile app.
  3. Martin Jun 21, 2013
    Well you need content for the app and in Sitefinity content lives in modules(though it can be sourced elsewhere and connected to these modules). If you are looking to make your entire website mobile-optimized you may want to look at responsive design. You can optimize any page for any device all through the user interface and see how it looks with the built-in mobile device previews. You can find out more on this page - http://www.sitefinity.com/cms-mobile/responsive-design  and with this video - http://www.sitefinity.com/developer-network/videos/supporting-mobile-devices-in-sitefinity-with-responsive-design

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