When was the last time you looked at a website on your tablet or smartphone?
Just now, this morning, yesterday? I’ll be shocked if it’s not as recently as that, because mobile traffic (i.e. website traffic that originates from tablets, smartphones, and handheld gaming devices) numbers are now almost as great as traditional website traffic sources. The upshot is that if your website isn’t optimised for mobile traffic (and that means more than just loading quickly on a mobile platform), the browsing experience of your website visitors will be poor. In other words, you’ll miss out on a massive number of potential customers.
But do you need to develop another separate website for smartphone and tablet visitors? Nope! You just need to make your current website responsive!
Responsive website design is a way of building websites so that they ‘respond’ to the platform they’re being viewed on to optimise the viewing experience. With responsive website design there is no need for the website visitor to labour through awkward scrolling and panning exercises or to keep resizing the window – a responsive website will organise and display itself slightly differently (depending on what size device it’s being viewed on) so that the visitor can easily navigate and view the website.
Today’s online marketplace is highly competitive, and customers’ attentions are short – if your website is not easy to view and navigate on phones, laptops, PCs, tablets and games consoles, you’ll lose your customer within seconds (5, to be precise!). Remember that every visitor to your website is a potential customer, client or partner. If you don’t convert them, your ‘responsive’ competitors will.
Even loyal website visitors can grow weary if they find that the website they enjoy viewing on their desktop is difficult and frustrating to view on their mobile phone – just think about how many times you’ve sat at home, on a train, in your car, etc., and browsed the internet on your phone. If your dependable visitor finds another similar website that’s easier to view on their phone, they’ll not think twice about switching over – so responsive website design is essential for visitor retention too.
As mobile technology widens (Google glasses, anyone?), the fact is that mobile traffic is only going to increase. Responsive website design isn’t a phase – it’s the future. Make sure that your website is optimised so that your business is ahead of the game.