As technology continues to innovate consumers are spending more of their time online on a mobile or tablet device. Trend reports have estimated that nearly 50% of website traffic will be accessed on a mobile device in the year 2016. With an increasing amount of web traffic coming in from different sources it is essential that your website is optimized for usage to improve your user-experience and functionality.
Why do you need a responsive website ?
- Increased mobile usage
- Users viewing your website from a variety of sources – desktop, laptop, mobile, and tablets
- Increased SEO
What is Responsive Design
Responsive websites are not built with a specific device in mind but instead are built to scale your content. That means your website will be resized and reformatted to optimize your user-experience and design on any device from desktops and smartphones to tablets. Responsive websites offer an upgrade from previously popular mobile websites because they are able to reformat for any current or future technologies. They are also great because they only require one coded website instead of previous mobile templates that required mobile-only sub-domains and mobile specific content. With a responsive website, you can rest easy knowing that your website will look beautiful for all of your current and potential customers both now and in the future.
Responsive websites also result in increased SEO, which can help potential customers find your business. It has also been found that search engines, such as Google prefer responsive websites because they are setup easier for its crawlers to access.
Why has Mobile Usage has Continued to Increase
As our phones continue to get “smarter”, users no longer are dependent upon accessing the Internet through computers. Social media has also played a dramatic role in increasing mobile web traffic. With businesses promoting their services and products through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. mobile web traffic has continued to increase. Another cause of the increase is the availability of mobile Internet access through 3G/4G networks. This has allowed users to search on-the-go, which has been especially beneficial to local businesses.
Why Does it Matter
In today’s saturated market, user experience is more important than ever. Your website is often your first impression (and sometimes only experience with your brand) and if users can’t navigate your site easily, they are likely to go elsewhere. With estimates of 50% of web traffic coming in through mobile devices it is essential that you are not missing out on potential business opportunities. If something were causing half of your customers to not be able to access your business you’d consider making a change right? This should be no different.
How Do You Know if You Have Responsive Design
The easiest way to see if you have a responsive design is by adjusting an open window on your computer. If elements shift to adjust to the sizing then your website is responsive, whereas if they stay the same then it is not responsive. You can also check-in with your web developer or designer. Depending on the back-end of your website, some platforms such as Squarespace, Webflow, and several templates available on Shopify are automatically built to be responsive.
Now that you know the importance of having a responsive design website it’s time to do your research. Look at your web analytics to see how much of your web traffic is coming from mobile and find out if your website is responsive. If not you may want to check in with your web designer or if you designed your own website, into other DIY options.