Do I Need Responsive Web Design for My Website?

Chris Sams, July 20, 2016

Responsive design is one of the most important – if not the most important – feature of a web design. Responsive design allows your website to be properly displayed on any screen size – without it, mobile users will have trouble accessing or navigating your site on their smartphones or tablets.

This is important because more than half of all American adults own a smartphone and roughly 60 percent of all Internet traffic comes from mobile devices. If your website isn’t built with a responsive design, then you’re neglecting an enormous part of your audience. In fact, not only are you neglecting them, you’ll be missing out on them as well since they’ll have no trouble finding a competitor that does offer a responsive design.

The following is a breakdown of just how important it is to have a responsive web design:

  • A responsive design improves the user experience – A mobile user that can’t easily read through the content on your website, whether it’s because they have to scroll horizontally and zoom in to read your content or because images and videos aren’t loading, aren’t going to want to stay on your site for long. A responsive design makes it much easier for people to use your website.
  • A responsive web design improves SEO – Google actually uses two separate search engine rankings – one for regular websites and one for mobile sites. If your website doesn’t have a responsive design, it won’t rank well for mobile SEO. This means that when someone does a search on their smartphone, they’re much less likely to find your site on the SERP (search engine results page) than they would if they performed the search on their desktop. Basically, not having a responsive web design can limit exposure to your site.
  • A responsive design allows for less maintenance – Instead of having a website that was built with a responsive design, some companies will build two separate sites – one that is mobile and the other that isn’t. While this can work, it makes maintenance much more difficult since you’ll basically be running two sites instead of one.
  • Social media will drive mobile visitors – Roughly 55 percent of social media consumption occurs on mobile devices. This means that if you link to your website from your social media page, there’s a good chance that these social media users are accessing your link via their smartphone or tablet.
  • Responsive design is flexible – A responsive website isn’t designed for specific smartphones or tablets – it’s designed specifically to be able to adapt to the size of the screen, no matter what that size is. This means that if someone releases a new tablet/phone hybrid in the future, your responsive website will be displayed on it perfectly.

It’s extremely important that your website is properly displayed on mobile devices. A responsive web design is essential if you don’t want to miss out on a major part of your audience.

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