Fast-forward to 2016 and, for the first time, we saw mobile web browsing overtaking desktop.
By 2018, Google announced it was moving to mobile-first indexing. In other words, rather than crawling the desktop version of a website as it used to, it primarily crawls, indexes and ranks the mobile version of a website. That’s why it’s not only vital that you have a responsive website design, but that it’s also uber mobile friendly.
Is a responsive website the same as a mobile site?
A mobile (or mobile-friendly site) is one that looks good on a mobile device. However, that doesn’t mean its responsive. It’s usually run alongside a desktop version of the same site, making maintenance and management a real headache.
When a website is responsive, it has a flexible layout that modifies to the screen size on which you’re viewing it. In other words, it looks great on desktop, tablet and mobile making it easy to navigate, easy to read and (of course) easy to interact with.
The benefits of responsive website design
There are five main benefits of adopting a responsive website design.
Maintaining different websites for your web and non-web audiences are both time consuming and expensive. When you have a responsive design, you’re eliminating the need for an additional mobile site.
Having just one site across all platforms means only one log-in and only one website to maintain. Updating content and design tweaks can be done quickly and easily.
3. User experience
Your website is there to be used and viewed. If it’s clunky, glitchy and awkward to use people won’t bother with it and they certainly won’t come back.
A professional, responsive design will deliver the kind of user experience your audience wants. Whether on desktop, tablet or mobile, they will be able to easily read and navigate your site negating the need for zooming and scrolling.
4. Search engine optimisation
We alluded to this one earlier when we talked about Google.
The search giant has been very open about giving mobile-friendly websites preference when it comes to rankings. Therefore, when used in combination with other search engine factors, a responsive website will provide your online visibility with an added boost.
5. Better social management
Your marketing strategy doesn’t begin and end with your website. On top of brochures, newsletters and adverts, there are your social channels to consider.
For a moment, let’s say you have two websites that you’re running alongside one another. Not only do you have double the work when it comes to updating content and design, but you also have to consider which URL to link to from your social media posts.
Having a single, responsive design removes that headache making managing your online presence a whole lot easier.
It’s time to be responsive
So far, we have built a pretty water-tight argument for the benefits of going responsive. Time and money are saved, online visibility is improved, and your customers enjoy a far better experience.
What’s not to like? That stats speak for themselves:
- 62% of companies have reported mobile responsive websites increase sales
- 40% of users won’t engage with a website that’s not mobile-friendly
- 52.2% of all internet traffic is mobile
- 48% of website visitors believe companies without a responsive site don’t care
- By 2023, the global number of mobile devices is predicted to hit 16.8 billion
- 90% of consumers will return to a website shop if they have a great experience
Isn’t it time you went responsive?