One of the current trends in website development is responsive and it’s certainly something that increasingly our clients are asking for.
Responsive web design, put simply, is a website which adjusts to fit the screen size that the user is viewing the site on, be that a smartphone, a phablet, a tablet, a laptop or a desktop computer. A truly successful responsive site is one that looks great and works brilliantly at all of those screen sizes.
Whether the screen is a regular desktop PC:
…or it’s a little larger:
…or a lot larger:
So why consider responsive design when thinking about your next website? Well there are lots of reasons but we reckon these are the four most important points in favour of having a responsive site;
Reason one – the rise of mobile use
So many people these days use their phone to browse the internet so it makes sense that your website makes it easy for them to do so. Mobile internet usage is predicted to overtake desktop usage by the end of the year. Here’s the single column mobile view:
And here’s the tablet portrait view:
If you are selling online, responsive can make the difference between winning and losing the sale. 67% of users claim they would be more likely to purchase from a mobile friendly site. In the UK, 7/10 people have a smartphone and in a recent survey of mobile use in Europe, 32% of Brits claimed to make a purchase monthly via their phone. Compelling stats!
Reason two – the importance of social media, email marketing and blogging
If social media, email marketing or blogging are an important part of your marketing activity, the chances are that part of the reason for doing this is to push people to your website. So you might tweet links to your latest blog, your next newsletter could contain links to your online shop, your latest case study or a new portfolio of images. So imagine if they land on that page whilst browsing social or emails on their phone or tablet. Are you 100% sure that’s going to be a good experience? If you want them to go ahead and make a purchase, can they easily do that without too much effort?
Reason three – responsive is future friendly
A new website is a big investment for companies and if you’re a small business owner, unsure of the ROI of a website, the investment seems even larger. So the last thing you want is to have the investment you’ve made compromised by technological advances and changes in the ways people access the internet.
So if in the next few years, your customers and clients start to use watches, TV screens, games consoles or glasses to view your website, it will still look great and be very user friendly if it is responsive.
Reason four – responsive is better for SEO
The reasons as to why SEO is better with responsive mainly relates to those companies who currently have a desktop AND a mobile site to manage.
Responsive sites are a better option for SEO than having a desktop site and a separate mobile site. Google prefers responsive as they have just one URL structure to deal with. If you have two sites, you have twice the work in terms of SEO campaigns as they’re seen by Google as two separate sites.
Google also includes positive user experience as a ranking factor. It can be annoying to find something you’re looking for on a mobile device, to then go back to that later on a desktop and find yourself on the mobile site. This isn’t a good user experience and so as well as just being a little irritating and potentially halting a sale, this will also affect your Google rankings.
We don’t as yet have a responsive site ourselves but it’s definitely on our schedule for the next 12 months. It will involve a comprehensive overhaul and like cobblers and shoes, we’re too busy sorting everyone else right now!
A responsive site from tent can cost as little as £995+VAT and funding may well be available so why not get in touch?
Here are some recent examples of responsive sites we have created with our partners at Digital Acorn. Have a look at the sites and either look on various devices or if you are on a PC simply drag the browser window larger and smaller to see how the sites respond automatically.