What’s the deal with having a responsive website?
Chances are you have probably read a lot of articles about how in the future it will be important to reach customers on their phones or have joked with a friend about how much kids use their mobile devices these days. You may have heard the term “responsive website” in this context. If you are like a lot of brands, you probably made a note to explore how to connect with mobile users “when we have a time” or at next quarter’s strategy meeting.
The TRUTH is that waiting to connect with mobile users is no longer viable. Connecting with mobile users is no longer “increasingly important.” It is now a requirement!
Trillions of searches are conducted on Google and other search engine platforms. Today, over half of those searches are conducted on a mobile device! You may think that those numbers are being driven by our phone-obsessed teenage population. However, over 90% of adult Americans (18+) own a mobile device and 60% of adult cell phone owners use the internet on their phone. Beyond just use, purchase research and decision making are occurring on mobile devices. 80% of consumers regularly use their smartphones to shop online and 70% of shoppers use mobile phones while in a store during the holidays!
The Responsive Website Defined
Responsive websites automatically adjust themselves for any screen size by reordering and resizing content. There is only one design, which eliminates the inefficiency of making edits and improvements to both a mobile and desktop web page.
Improved User Experience
Responsive website design allows for a better user experience. A user no longer has to waste time pinching and zooming to get to the relevant content they need. This also allows a user to more effectively make purchases or submit lead forms to your site.
Search Engine Optimization
Search engines recognize the improved user experience and are adjusting their algorithms accordingly to reward responsive web design. Google has already announced they will eventually use the mobile version of a site as the primary way to evaluate a site’s content and rank pages accordingly.
Social media is and will continue to drive more traffic to mobile sites. Over half of social media consumption occurs on mobile devices. Recognize that sharing links to your social media profiles will increase mobile traffic, not desktop traffic. Users will use social media to research and gather feedback on potential shopping decisions. When your customers provide a valuable referral, it is vital that your website is responsive so that it is equipped to handle these incoming customers on mobile devices.
Read this Wikipedia article for a little more info about responsive website design.