Picture this: You’re relaxing at home, maybe hanging out with friends, maybe working on a project. You need to look something up — where to buy a product; when a new movie will be released; how to complete a task. Chances are, your phone is within reach, making it convenient to pull up a mobile browser and look for the information you need.
You’re not alone — nearly 60% of all web traffic in America comes from a mobile device such as a tablet or a smartphone.
Users access the web for a variety of reasons — social media, gathering information, and making purchases. Smartphones play a key role in online shopping. About 80% of shoppers rely on their smartphones when making online purchases, making mobile friendly eCommerce solutions extremely important.
In other words, internet users are now accessing the web from a multitude of devices, and web traffic no longer comes solely from desktop computers. It’s more important than ever that you keep up with the latest and greatest.
Provide a positive user experience with a mobile-friendly site…and enjoy the benefits
Fully-responsive websites play a large role in providing the best possible user experience.
Research by Google found that 53% of mobile visitors will abandon a webpage if it doesn’t load within about three seconds. It’s not entirely surprising; consider the last time you tried to access web content from a mobile device only to find that it’s hard to read, difficult to navigate, non-functional, or slow to load. I’ll bet you bounced — or a least were a little frustrated.
Another fun fact: Google reported that mobile sites that load within five seconds retain users at a higher rate than sites that take 19 seconds to load. It’s important to keep users’ attention once they’re on your page — and other than engaging visuals and content, speed is a very important factor.
Websites that are optimized for mobile performance take all of these aspects into consideration. Load times are increased by using smaller and compressed files. Designs adjust as the screen size shrinks to allow the site to be easy to use and pleasant to look at.
Simply put…having a site that is clean and functional across all devices gives off a more professional appearance and encourages your visitors to stick around. But that’s not all.
Having a responsive site is also important when considering your SEO rankings. Mobile sites provide a better user experience, and when Google crawls the web, your site sticks out more than a site that provides poor user experience. Google likes sites that are mobile friendly and it will reflect that in your SEO ranking.Fun fact: You DON’T need a mobile app. Here’s what you need, instead (tips from a #developer): Click To Tweet
Responsive site vs. mobile app?
You may notice that some organizations and companies have special mobile apps. For example: Your bank or credit union likely has an app that allows for remote check deposits. And your favorite retail store probably has an app where you can pull up coupons for items you are purchasing.
While mobile apps do have their pros, they also have their cons. Having a separate mobile app means an entirely separate source of information for your users — plus twice the price to maintain, twice the work to update, and twice the content to work with.
One site means less work and more time to grow your business
Fortunately, a mobile app isn’t the only answer. Fully-responsive sites optimize your website for multiple devices, giving you all the benefits of an adaptable web presence without the secondary responsibility of a separate app.
Why else might you choose to make your site responsive rather than investing in a mobile app? Consider these benefits:
- Google prefers sites that use one URL as opposed to sites that have a separate mobile URL.
- It provides a more consistent experience for users who access your site from various devices.
- It streamlines your work, as an administrator. One site to maintain, update, and add content to eliminates unnecessary stress. (And saves you quite a bit of time!)
- A responsive site saves a lot of money in the long run as far as maintenance. It is one site to maintain, purchase hosting for, and purchase a domain for.
Choose the fully-responsive website
Having a responsive site is extremely important. The best WordPress themes will have built-in responsiveness (like all brandiD themes!), but it should still be kept in mind by your designer or developer.
Whether it is simply informative, a membership site, or an eCommerce store, I’d love to hear more about how you’re optimizing your site and business to cater toward the more than 60% of visitors coming from mobile!