Responsive Websites are the current trend in website design. Popular since 2013 this type of website utilizes “mobile first” code to allow a website to change to accommodate whatever device a user is viewing the website on. Pre 2013 most websites were developed only for desktop and laptop computers. As smartphones and tablets became popular it was realized that “old style” websites did not always look good and were not user friendly on these devices. Add in the various screen sizes common on these devices and it rapidly became apparent that website design methodology needed to change.
How a Responsive Website works is beyond the scope of this article. Here we will focus on why your business website should be responsive and the advantages of having a responsive site. Please note: The following discussion applies to anyone who wants a modern, clean and professional looking website, not just business owners.
Visitors to your website use a variety of devices to view your pages and content. Visits from a mobile device (Smartphone, Tablet, Laptop) make up more than half of the visits to websites these days. If your website does not adapt and respond well to these devices visitors and potential customers will leave in favor of a more friendly website. Online customers often use a mobile device to browse products and services while making purchasing decisions. They want information quickly and will not tolerate a slow, frustrating online experience.
Responsive websites detect the device a visitor is using and automatically change the pages and content to accommodate the given device. This leads to a more friendly and satisfying experience for potential customers and may well lead to a new client or sale for your business.
A Responsive Website saves time and money over creating one version of a website for a desktop, another for a tablet and yet another for a smartphone. In the early days of tablets and smartphones this was a common practice and cost the website owner more money in development and design costs. Since Responsive sites automatically adapt to mobile devices these extra costs are eliminated.
Maintenance and Update costs are reduced compared to “old style” websites. The agency managing your website only needs to make changes to one website instead of the same changes being applied to both a desktop and mobile website.
A website that loads quickly on all devices and get the visitors to the products, services or information they are interested in will naturally lead to a more positive, enjoyable experience. Responsive sites load much quicker, use interfaces such as buttons, menu’s and tabs to help get the visitor where they want to go and will make your website’s first impression as professional and seamless as possible. They optimize automatically to suit the user’s screen and loads quickly and efficiently, thus making it more likely that the visitor will form a positive opinion of your business.
When potential customers search for keywords relating to your business, products or services you want to appear near the top of the search results. Responsive websites are better for your search engine rankings for various reasons, for example, because they tend to provide higher user satisfaction and therefore lower bounce rates (People leaving a website after a short time).
With technology ever changing especially with smartphones and tablets it will pay dividends to ensure your website is ready for those changes. Responsive websites offer the ability to meet the needs of today’s technology and for the future.