Website Mobilization Tools Go Head To Head: DudaMobile vs MobeeArt
November 21st, 2012 by
I don’t know about you, but I can barely leave my desk without grabbing my iPhone and bringing it with me. I know I’m not alone in this because as of May, more than half of U.S. mobile users have smartphones. Each day more people are interacting with websites, search results and advertisement via some type of mobile format. That is why it has become increasingly more important for businesses to make their websites mobile-friendly.
There are several companies offering services to mobilize your website quickly and easily. Two services that have caught my eye are MobeeArt and Dudamobile. Dudamobile has partnered up with Google to try to create a more mobile-ready internet, while MobeeArt boasts an intuitive “what you see is what you get” approach. Both claim to be the easy DIY place to mobilize your website as quickly as possible.
MobeeArt offers a mobilization suite that is both feature-rich and claims to have an ease of use and intuitive navigation. The company offers two versions of their suite: a very simple editor that instantly mobilizes your website and a much more robust suite that I preferred.
The basic editor seems to be pretty par for the course as mobilization suites go. The view screen is cleverly phone shaped with basic options on the left hand side. The advanced editor, however, is a robust and visually comprehensive editor. The advanced editor allows you pull different items (photos, logos, text) from the desktop version to add to a custom-made page on the mobile site and tokenizes them to automatically sync with any changes that happen to the desktop site.
Dudamobile’s suite has a much more subtle difference between their basic and advanced editors. The visual representation remains “phone on the right; features on the left” regardless of whether you look at the basic or advanced editor. This caused certain difficulties later on in the process of mobilization.
During my testing, I found that while I enjoyed the robust feature set of the suite, I was very put off by the difficulty to find some of those features. Figuring out how to add the call tracking feature I wanted or where certain features lived inside the suite’s architecture proved to be quite the undertaking at times.
Navigating the website’s architecture, however, was incredibly easy in the Studio. The site’s skeleton was prominently displayed on the left hand side next to a visual representation of the website. The basic sitemap and relationships between parent and child pages are easily accessible.
Navigating through the pages of website, however, was incredibly difficult. I had to rely on either the navigation menus built into the site I was mobilizing or a small drop down menu that listed every single page that existed on the desktop version, regardless of whether I chose to use it in the mobile version. This made switching from one page to another somewhat of a chore.
Save Your Work!
The advanced editor prominently displayed a save button so you would not lose your work. The basic editor seems to auto-save at a rate that is unknown to me, but didn’t make me worry about losing my work.
The suite, however, did crash on me multiple times while attempting to edit the website and I lost a lot of changes. Remember, kids: ALWAYS SAVE YOUR WORK!
I can only assume this suite auto-saved a certain amount of my changes, but the save button was buried as a final step to creating your mobile website. This made me incredibly uncomfortable to leave the mobilization process to do anything. Getting nit-picky about the way your mobile website looks AND not being able to take a bathroom break makes for a pretty ornery user.
The editor had some integration with Google Analytics (very basic) and some of its own analytics, but I was pretty unimpressed by the offerings. Call tracking was nearly impossible and it was a task to put my own forms on the website. Additionally, as far as I could tell the suite did not provide canonical links.
Dudamobile, on the other hand, automatically created canonical links to unique content. Since the company is partnered up with Google, all of the integration with Google Analytics, Webmaster Tools, and other SEO is fairly robust (albeit proprietary).
We are riding on the crest of the mobile wave and it is increasingly more important for us to recognize this. I don’t think the magic easy-to-use and SEO-conscious mobilization suite really exists yet. I had a lot of hair-pulling moments with both MobeeArt and DudaMobile that leave me wanting more from both suites.
While DudaMobile probably wins this head-to-head by skin of its SEO-conscious teeth, the MobeeArt studio definitely has a slight aesthetic edge over the cumbersome one our winner provides. For best results, go with Google and DudaMobile, but watch this space for future developments in website mobilization.