Do you have a mobile friendly website?
Since the millennium started, the use of mobile devices to access the internet has picked up speed. By 2014, mobile internet usage exceeded desktop internet usage. With this balance tipping further in the favour of mobile internet users, businesses need to be visible on mobile devices as much as (if not more than) desktop devices.
Why do I need a mobile optimised website/ Responsive website?
Conventional websites don’t display very well on mobile devices, be it tablets or mobile phones. To tackle this matter, companies initially turned to creating a separate mobile website targeting specific devices. The website detected the device being used by the visitor and re-directed them to the relevant mobile website, whether it was the tablet site or the mobile phone site. This was to ensure that the visitor was greeted with a visually optimised website and did not have to zoom, scroll and pan, to get to the necessary information.
The problems (faced by the mobile website)
- The mobile website had to be created and designed separately to target each mobile device. This cost more time and money.
- The Mobile Web Design essentially created a separate mobile website, therefore giving it a different URLs with duplicate content. This is highly undesirable as it does not sit well with search engines.
- The mobile device detection process was often flawed sending the visitor to the wrong mobile website version of the site.
The Solution: A Responsive Website
Responsive web design makes use of CSS3 media queries and fluid grids to create websites, with optimal layout and design, for screens with various sizes. This means, that the layout of the website will change depending on the size of screen being used to view it. The width of the screen being one of the primary parameters used to decide on the layout for that particular device.
How is Responsive Web Design better than the Mobile Website?
Responsive Websites or Mobile Optimised Websites have many advantages over the traditional Mobile Websites. Some of these advantages being:
- Having only 1 website for multiple devices. – less cost, less time, easier to maintain and update.
- No separate URLs for similar content and hence no duplicate content. – Better search engine listings
- Your website is optimally viewable on more Mobile devices – up to date with the times of technology
Based on the information above, one may conclude that having a Responsive Website Design is cheaper, less time consuming and much more effective and efficient than the Mobile Website.
For Google, having a responsive website is the preferred way to create a website. See Google Recommendations