As the use of mobile devices steadily increases, it’s becoming more important for you to design a website that automatically responds and adjusts to mobile devices. The best approach to achieve this is to utilise a responsive website design.
A responsive website is not the same as a mobile-friendly website. A mobile-friendly website is a website that has an attractive appearance on mobile devices but could have a poor user experience (UX) when visitors view it on a traditional desktop computer. A responsive website is designed so that it adapts to the type of device that a visitor is using to view it. Whether visitors view your site on a mobile device or a desktop, they will have the same UX.
The designs of responsive websites are based on fluid grids; the sizing of the page elements is based on proportions rather than on pixels. For example, if a page on your website has three columns, you wouldn’t specify how wide those columns should be; rather, you could say that the first column should take up 50% of the page and the second and third columns should each take up 25% of the page.
You would also size images on a relative basis so that they would stay appropriately placed within the page’s design elements. Here are four reasons why using a responsive website design is beneficial:
1. Increases traffic from mobile users
It was once common for businesses to have one version of its website for desktop users and another one for mobile users, and some businesses still maintain that practice. However, with the rapid increase in using mobile devices to access business websites, maintaining two versions of a website is both time-consuming and a high-maintenance proposition. Having a responsive website that seamlessly works with all devices makes it more likely that mobile viewers will continue to access your site and continue to purchase goods or services from you.
2. Lowers the cost of website maintenance
Initially, developing a responsive website can be relatively expensive. However, once you have it operational, the maintenance costs of operating a responsive website are lower than operating two versions of the same site, and it takes less time. You can devote the time saved from maintaining two sites to other important functions in running your business.
3. Provides a better UX
Providing a better UX is one of the best benefits of a responsive website. Unresponsive websites tend to distort the way that your site appears on mobile devices, and visitors who don’t have any problems viewing your site on a desktop computer may see jumbled text and distorted images. Visitors who experience a poor UX on your mobile will most likely choose not to return to it again.
With a responsive website, visitors will have a consistent experience when visiting your site. Since it adapts to devices with varying screen sizes, your responsive website will seamlessly work with new mobile devices as they continue to proliferate.
4. Improves your SEO efforts
Responsive websites are more likely to rank higher in search engine results. A site with a consistently good UX is more likely to entice visitors to stay longer. Search engine algorithms take the time that visitors remain on a site into account when ranking a site, so your site is likely to receive a higher rank if it is responsive.
It’s worth your time and effort to make your site responsive.