Welcome attendees of the 2015 Mobile in Clinical Trials conference! This post has been created as a companion to a talk presented by Gerald Matczak and I, titled “Impact of the Mobile Web on Clinical Trial Awareness & Recruitment.”
You will get the most out of this post if you were present for our talk. But if you did not attend the conference, you are of course welcome to download the slides and browse the resources we’ve collected.
Speaking of slides, you can find those here.
Below you will find a collection of resources related to our presentation. We hope that these resources will be of use as you deepen your understanding of the mobile Web and explore how to optimize your clinical trial or patient recruitment website for mobile visitors.
Mobile Use & Behavior Statistics
As you consider the impact of the mobile Web on your clinical trials, it’s useful to look at mobile adoption and behavior data for prospective clinical trial participants. The resources in this section are a great place to start doing that.
eMarketer publishes a variety of digital marketing research, insights, and benchmarks. This particular article tracks smartphone adoption in 25 countries over the course of 6 years.
Our Mobile Planet
The Our Mobile Planet website is provided by Google. It allows you to explore mobile statistics in 48 countries and create custom charts to help you understand mobile behavior in those countries.
GWI Device Summary
Global Web Insights publishes a quarterly report on the latest trends for smartphones, tablets, smart TVs, and wearables. You can download a free Q1 2015 report summary by following the link we’ve provided.
ITU Statistics Page
The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) shares a variety of information and communications technology statistics, including mobile subscriptions by country over several years.
We Are Social’s Compendium of Digital Statistics
We Are Social puts out an extremely comprehensive collection of global digital statistics. You’ll find mobile statistics here, as well as social media and general digital statistics.
Pew Research’s US Smartphone Use Report
If your prospective clinical trial participants reside in the US, Pew’s US Smartphone Use report is a great place to understand their mobile use and behavior. For example, here you’ll learn that 19% of US Internet users are “smartphone dependent,” among other tidbits.
Creating Mobile-Friendly Clinical Trial Websites
Due to presentation time constraints, we couldn’t get into too much detail about how to go about creating a mobile-friendly clinical trial or patient recruitment website. So we’ve collected the resources below to help you assess and improve the mobile-friendliness of your website.
Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test
If you want to assess the mobile-friendliness of your clinical trial or patient recruitment website, Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test is the easiest place to start. Simply pop in the URL and Google will tell you if its algorithms deem the site mobile-friendly. If it doesn’t deem the site mobile-friendly, it will note why. You can also read up on the factors Google uses to determine a website’s mobile-friendliness here.
Google’s PageSpeed Insights
Google’s PageSpeed Insights test is similar to their Mobile-Friendly Test, but it assesses your website’s load time. Results are presented for both a desktop and mobile device. Google considers load time to be important for user experience and uses it as a signal in its ranking algorithm. Using this test, you can see how quickly your website loads on a mobile device and view suggestions for making it load faster.
Google Webmaster Tools Mobile Usability
Google provides mobile usability information in Webmaster Tools. However, in order to use Webmaster tools you must have access to the backend of your website.
Principles of Mobile Site Design
As mentioned during our presentation, Google assesses mobile-friendliness according to what it can incorporate into an algorithm like that used in the Mobile Friendly Test. Humans are actually much more discerning than algorithms when it comes to assessing mobile-friendliness. So Google conducted research to see what users find mobile-friendly and distilled those insights into 25 mobile design principles. We explored a few of these principles in our presentation, but you can find the full list and much more detail by viewing Google’s full report.
Google Mobile-Friendly Websites Guide
This website is primarily geared to website developers, but there is some basic information here as well. And even though you may not be a website developer, some of the information here can be useful to help you better communicate with your web developer.
Google Multi-Screen Resources
Our presentation primarily focused on mobile phones, but increasingly websites will need to be designed for multiple screen sizes. Google has a website devoted to educating businesses on how to approach multi-screen design.
If you’d like to see what your website looks like on multiple devices with different screen sizes / orientations, Responsinator is a useful tool to help you do that. Simply plug in your URL and see the results.
If there is one thing we hope you took from our presentation, it’s that patient-facing clinical trial websites need to be mobile-friendly. Given the challenges of patient awareness and recruitment, we cannot afford to turn away the increasingly large group of people accessing the Internet with a mobile device. The resources we’ve provided should help you survive and even thrive in this emerging environment.