One billion smartphones were shipped in 2013 – yeah, that’s 10 digits! According to the latest study from the Pew Internet & American Life Project, two-thirds of cell-phone owning Americans use their phones to surf the Web and check e-mail – a number that has doubled since 2009. It is obvious that mobile has taken over and that there is no end in sight. So what does that mean for businesses? It means you need a responsive website.
What is responsive web design?
Responsive web design (RWD) is a way of creating your website to “respond” to different screen sizes. If you change the size of your website browser, check the webpage on your phone or pull it up on an iPad, the webpage will automatically adjust to fit the screen. RWD has proven itself to be the solution to making a serviceable website in a time when there are so many different screen types and sizes.
Benefits of RWD
RWD is not just beautiful graphically, it is beautiful functionally. While mobile sites and RWD are both ways to address the screen problem, RWD became the winning technology for several reasons:
- RWD is efficient: You only have to update one website versus updating your desktop and mobile websites.
- RWD is clean: All your content is in one place – no need to redirect people from a mobile to a desktop website.
- RWD is loved by Google: Google has stated that RWD is an industry best practice – a.k.a. a responsively designed site will rank higher than a mobile site in a search.
“But we don’t have the budget…”
Then save up. At this point, it would be a waste of money to redesign a website and not make it responsive. It would be like buying a new TV that has a VHS player instead of a DVD or Blue-ray player; it may look better than what you had before, but it isn’t useful for anyone who has moved past the year 2000.
If you really can’t find room in your budget to finance a responsive site (and I am encouraging you to try very hard), there are ways to make your current website more mobile friendly while you are saving.
Optimizing the user experience by going responsive will lead to an increase in engagement and, honestly, will enable your business to remain competitive. As harsh as it sounds, in this day and age the business with the best website wins.
(Side note: We are currently working on the redesign of the Allee Creative website as we type. We can’t wait to unveil our new, responsive design to you soon!)