Does My Website Really Need To Be Responsive?
In an age where more than 55% of users are surfing the web and making purchases on their mobile devices, having a mobile-friendly website has become essential. In February, Google called much attention to this by announcing a change in their algorithm that would favor mobile-friendly sites when searching on a mobile device.
If you need to redo your site, there used to be two options – a responsive website or a separate mobile website. A separate mobile website is pretty much what it sounds like. You have one version of your site that is displayed on a desktop and another that comes up on mobile. While a separate mobile website is effective in passing Google’s mobile-friendly test https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/, it is not as effective in communicating with your customers. This method also creates duplicate efforts from your programmer. Separate mobile sites were originally created for phones that couldn’t display regular websites, but now phones have web browsers just as capable as your desktop browser.
A responsive website is coded with the ability to change its layout based on the screen size of the device viewing it. For example, your desktop site may display three columns, but when viewed on a phone it will stack those three columns into one. This makes the site easier to view/navigate. If you want to see if a site is responsive, you can view it on desktop and simply resize your browser by dragging the bottom corners closer to each other.
If you have an existing site that is not responsive, it unfortunately isn’t something you can add. Responsive web design is an approach that needs to be taken at the beginning of the design process. If you have been thinking about a new design for your company’s website, you could implement responsive web design on your re-launch. Want to talk web design? Email firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to take you mobile!