5 Reasons Why Your Website Needs to be Responsive
- Jun 2016
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How people interact with your website will depend on whether they use a mobile phone; desktop monitor; tablet or laptop to access the page. It is important then to allow your site to adapt seamlessly to the user’s requirements by automatically adjusting text, audio, video and navigation elements.
This is known as making the design responsive and it involves the website designer crafting the structure of the site to adjust (or be responsive) to the different platforms. The designer uses code to adjust the layout of the site through changeable grids and CSS to allow flexibility of use. The end result is a fully optimised website that makes viewing and navigating your site easy.
There are a number of key benefits to using responsive web design.
1. The Google recommendation
Google has said that responsive web design is best practice. This is interpreted by Google watchers as meaning your site is more likely to have higher search engine rankings if it includes a responsive web design. Google’s preference stems from the fact that each page of the website has one URL — rather than others that have been created for desktop and mobile versions. This improves efficiency for the search engine as it reduces the number of pages it needs to “crawl”.
Responsive web design is at the heart Google’s ethos to maximise the user experience. Such a design will deliver a website that is easy to read and navigate, with reduced amount of re-sizing needed by the reader for optimum viewing. For this reason, the search engine will tend to rank your site higher in rankings.
2. Higher conversions/improved engagement
A better user experience helps encourage a wider audience, and therefore, higher conversions and sales. Google’s own figures show that 67 percent of users were more likely to buy from a company that had incorporated responsive web design into their mobile site. Improved engagement with users also means more chance of being shared on social media platforms. This is particularly true of mobile users who are more likely than other users to share on social media.
3. More cost effective than building 3 sites for desktop, tablet & mobile
Incorporating responsive web design is more cost effective than having to design multiple sites for desktop, tablet and mobile. This is because the developer works with a single piece of code — rather than many — for the single website meaning the developer can do the required work in less time and for less money.
4. Easier to manage
The key to a successful SEO strategy is simplicity. Having two variants of the site (one for mobile and tablets, one for desktops) complicated the management of search engine optimisation marketing. Combining a single well-researched keyword strategy with responsive web design in one website instead of many versions, allows for easier control.
5. User Experience
User Experience Design, or simply UX, involves improving all aspects of the website design that boost access and ease of use. This is crucial to keeping readers on site and clicking through to other sections. The easier it is for them to stay decreases the bounce rate and increases the likelihood of sales of your products and services. Responsive web design is a key part of UX and will help enhance and improve the reader’s overall experience across all platforms.
Responsive web design has become even more important with the explosion of interest in mobile phones and tablets. Web designers are responding to this challenge by incorporating responsive web design in a way that boosts users’ experience, increases SEO and saves time and money. Find out what responsive web design can do for your website.