The 2013 State of Mobile & Responsive Web in #highered [FULL REPORT]

April 10th, 2013 Karine Joly No Comments

How higher ed is doing with the mobile & responsive web?

This is the question that the 3rd edition of the State of the Mobile and Responsive Web in Higher Ed survey report answers in a 12-page document – including results and charts.

This open and independent research work is supported by Higher Ed Experts . When you buy a pass to our online events like the upcoming Higher Ed Responsive Websites Summit or you sign up for our Responsive Web Design online course, you also help fund this kind of work. So, thank you! :-).

Share to help spread the word about the report – and get your copy!

In higher education, decisions are often based on traditions, opinions or hunches. Benchmarking data is not easy to collect, but everybody wins if it’s spread widely.

This is why I’m asking you to share this research with your professional network.
A like, a tweet, a +1 or LinkedIn share will automatically give you access to the 12-page report (PDF) so you can download or print it. You can preview a selection of findings below as well (even if you don’t feel like sharing today)

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A total of 174 professionals working mainly in the marketing, communication (43%) and web offices (40%) at universities and colleges completed the third online survey about the state of the mobile and responsive web in higher education from January 8, 2013 to February 15, 2013.

This survey was completed online on a voluntary basis and thus doesn’t rely on a scientifically determined dataset. The resulting survey sample was smaller by 107 replies than the 2012 sample. However, it still seems fairly representative of the Carnegie Classification breakdown.

Mobile and tablet traffic share on the rise in higher ed

Mobile traffic share on college websites

  • The average reported share of traffic via mobile phones on institutional websites doubled in a year from 4.6% in 2011 to 9.3% in 2012.
  • 71% of the surveyed institutions reported mobile traffic shares between 6% and 11%
  • The average reported share of traffic via tablets on college websites went from 0.5% in 2011 to 3% in 2012.

Serving mobile users in higher ed? Getting there!

  • 68% (59% in 2012) of the survey respondents provide a solution (mobile website, responsive website, native mobile device applications etc.) targeting and serving owners of mobile and other connected devices. They have implemented this solution within the last year in 40% (72% in 2012) of the cases.
  • 95% (vs. 74% in 2012) of the survey respondents without a mobile solution have plans to implement one in the future, in less than a year in 85% (vs. 59%) of the cases.

68% of surveyed institutions have a mobile solution

Target audiences for mobile solutions: students first, faculty & staff second

  • 85% (88% in 2012) of the survey respondents identify current students as a target audience for their existing mobile solution, 78% (73% in 2012) for prospective students
  • 93% (90% in 2012) of the survey respondents planning a solution will target prospective students.
  • Two thirds of the survey respondents with an existing solution serve faculty and staff.

On-the-go Goals: supporting campus life, information & recruiting students

  • 73% (31% in 2012) of the existing and 60% (70% in 2012) planned mobile solutions have the goal of supporting campus life by providing a calendar of events, bus schedules or maps among others.
  • 68% of the surveyed institutions identify information/communication as a goal for their mobile web solution.
  • 65% of the current mobile solutions and 75% of the planned ones have student recruitment as an identified goal.

Mobile strategy: institutions are going responsive!

Mobile strategy trends (2011-2013)

  • 51% of the survey respondents with an existing solution have already adopted the responsive web design approach. In 2012 only 15% mentioned using responsive techniques.
  • 45% (56% in 2012) of the survey respondents with an existing solution have chosen to serve their mobile web users through a dedicated mobile website, 31% (26% in 2012) with native applications for specific devices.

More but still few mobile web budgets

  • 78% of the solutions were developed by staff/faculty, 24% by a higher ed vendor.
  • 56% (65% in 2012) of the survey respondents with a mobile solution report no budget.

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