Think about the last time you needed information on a product or service. What did you do? If you're like 77% of Americans, you Googled it. Now, think back once again. Were you on a mobile device?
According to Econsultancy, 44% of us use mobile devices to research products and services. Yet, a majority of websites were designed to be compatible with desktop computers only — they aren't mobile-friendly. Web geeks like us call these "non-responsive" sites.
You know when you're on a non-responsive website because you have to work harder to interact with it. You have to pinch, zoom and swipe left to right to view the product and read the content. Navigation is hidden. Offers and calls-to-action are often below the fold and hard to find. Buttons that were designed for a mouse click are too small for your fingers to tap easily.
What Will Mobile Website Visitors Do When They Visit Your Site?
Whether you realize it or not, people are visiting your site through mobile devices every day. In fact, if you check your analytics, you will probably find that already 10% – 30% of your visitors are coming from smart phones and tablets. What is their user experience like? One thing is certain, if you are not offering them a mobile user-friendly experience, you are losing potential business.
With mobile usage rising and more than 6,500 different devices in the market — all with varying screen sizes and capabilities — the time to consider designing and building a responsive site has arrived. Following are a handful of statistics that may help you determine whether or not responsive design is necessary for your website:
- 67% of consumers start shopping on one device, then continue to another.
- 34% turn to the screen closest to them when seeking information about a product or service.
- 46% report having problems viewing and interacting with a website designed for desktop viewing only when using a mobile device.
- 44% claim that navigation is difficult on smaller devices.
- 40% of visitors to non-responsive sites form an opinion in seconds and leave the site to search and purchase on websites that offer a better mobile user experience.
Suffice to say, if your current site doesn't offer a mobile-friendly user experience, you're throwing away potential customers, leads and sales.
Responsive Website Design Delivers a Better User Experience.
Certainly, desktop and laptop computers aren't going away anytime soon. But with four out of five consumers using smart phones and tablets, it has become extremely important to deliver a user experience that keeps the user's device of choice in mind.
So, What is Responsive Website Design?
Responsive Web Design is a process of thinking through how users will interact and engage with your website across multiple devices. It involves designing navigation and wireframes and laying out content (text, images, offers, forms and calls-to-action) for each device view. A developer then codes the website to provide optimal viewing experiences across a wide range of traditional and mobile devices, in portrait and landscape modes, to allow mobile users to rotate their screens.
It's important to note that designing and building a responsive website takes a little more time and budget to accomplish, but the advantages and results outweigh the time and investment.
Why Responsive? Why Now?
Why should you consider redesigning your website to be responsive? It's simple. Doing so will provide all visitors with an optimal customer experience, including those using a mobile device. Visitors of all ages are relying more and more on mobile devices. According to Business Insider and Mobile Marketing Watch, the average American spends
- 3-hours a day on a mobile device.
- 4-hours each day for 13 to 18 year olds.
- 5-hours each day for 19 to 22 year olds.
During that time, visitors are searching for your products or services. A responsive designed website gives you an advantage over competitors by providing your visitors with a superior mobile user experience.
Based on a Hubspot survey, 61% of consumers have a better opinion of brands that offer a good mobile experience.
In addition, responsive websites result in increased mobile traffic, with users who visit more frequently and stick around longer. Plus, visitors who have a positive experience with your mobile website are thought to be 67% more likely to buy a product or use a service, which can lead to an increase in leads and sales.
Brand and Marketing Benefits
From a brand management perspective, a responsive website can help you maintain a consistent look and feel across traditional and mobile devices. Responsive designed websites also allow you to keep your desktop and mobile content on a single URL, making it easier for visitors to access, interact with, and share.
Google Loves Responsive Websites
A responsive website can also help your SEO efforts. In December of 2014, Google announced that it would be giving preferential treatment to sites they consider to be mobile-friendly. If your website is not responsive, it will be penalized in search results starting this month for not abiding by the new web standard.
If Not Now, When?
Until recently, having a mobile site or responsive website was a nice-to-have — a courtesy to mobile users. But today the sheer number of devices and users — along with the changes Google has made — make it a need-to-have. And in the next few years, mobile and wearable devices will continue to grow in popularity. The longer you wait to address the burgeoning group of mobile visitors to your websites, the more leads and sales you risk losing to competitor sites.
Minds On — Responsive Website Design and Development
If you're considering redesigning your website to be responsive, the team at Minds On can help. Contact us today. We can meet over coffee, and learn about your website goals and objectives. Then we'll share our approach and process, and prepare an estimate.