It’s no secret that mobile devices are used by everyone. You’ve probably used your smartphone today to check social media, look up a product online or determine the location of your next meeting.
Today, more than 50% of searches are performed on mobile devices. For this reason, it’s important for both desktop and mobile devices to display your website well. You want your customers to have a positive experience with your site, no matter what device they are using.
This is where responsive design comes in.
What is “Responsive Web Design?”
Have you ever been searching on your phone and landed on a page that was either so zoomed out it was impossible to read or so zoomed in that you couldn’t see the whole page? I’d be willing to bet you didn’t stay on that page for very long.
Very often, this is the problem that many websites have: they have a great design on desktop but are distorted on mobile. The fact is, if most of your customers are going to view your website on a mobile device, it doesn’t matter how good it looks on desktop. So, how does a responsive design help?
Put simply, responsive website design allows your website to adapt in shape, size and layout to look amazing on any device. A site with a responsive design guarantees a positive experience for your customer, which can lead to more conversions for your business.
Mobile-Friendly vs. Responsive Design
You may have heard the term “mobile-friendly” in regards to a website. This is not the same thing as a responsive design.
Having a mobile-friendly design usually means having two versions of your website, one for desktop and one for mobile. This means having two different domains, two platforms to update with content and two websites to track and analyze performance for.
Responsive web design is different because you only have to worry about one domain, one website, and one set of analytics – across all devices. This greatly decreases the work that has to be put in to maintain the website and can increase ROI (return on investment).
In addition to all of that, Google actually recommends building a responsive website. And if Google recommends it, we’re going to take it pretty seriously.
Since a responsive website is housed on just one domain, it’s easier for Google’s bots to crawl and thus more likely for Google to rank your site higher than your competitor’s (who may not have a responsive website design).
Google has also given mobile phones a separate algorithm. That means if your site doesn’t look good on mobile, you won’t show in the mobile search results, effectively foregoing possible business opportunities. Remember that over 50% of search results are done on mobile!
Responsive Design and Social Media
Most people use social media multiple times during the day. Companies and brands have taken advantage of the social media audience by setting up their own accounts and interacting with their customers. Some companies actually drive a lot of traffic back to their website through their social media platforms.
Customers most commonly use social media on their phones, so when they click a link to your site, it’s important that it’s mobile responsive. If you’re running a social media campaign or are in any way paying for someone to keep up with those accounts, you’re wasting your money unless you have a responsive design.
Why You Should Use Responsive Design
The first reason we recommend a responsive design is because Google does. If you want your site to rank in Google (both on mobile and on desktop), it needs to be responsive, not just mobile-friendly.
Second, social media has the power to refer tons of mobile traffic to your site.
And third, a responsive design provides a seamless user experience for customers visiting your site on a smartphone, a tablet and on desktop. We hope this article helps you see the benefits of responsive web design.