Responsive Design Is A No-Brainer For 2015

Responsive Design Is A No-Brainer For 2015

(originally posted on Bring Your Own Design)

If you ask most C-level executives, they assume because they can get to their company site from their tablet, that they’ve got a “mobile site”.

However, having a site that merely loads on a mobile device isn’t enough nowadays. Users expect a different, tailored experience when they visit a site from a mobile device. Tiny text and hard-to-activate menus are simply unacceptable byproducts of relying on desktop layouts to work on mobile.

Over 80% of the top 10,000 websites are still not using responsive design. With mobile usage now surpassing desktop usage, putting time and money into content creation, search optimization, and paid advertising can be a waste of resources when mobile users aren’t going to stick around when they don’t have a tailored experience.

Search results page showing sites with responsive design.
Notice the “mobile-friendly” tag on the mobile search engine results page.

Additionally, search results on Google now display whether or not your site is mobile-friendly or uses responsive design. Imagine if you’re looking for a nearby business while on your mobile phone, and of the two best results, only one shows that it’s a mobile site. The majority of users are going to click on the site that’s labeled as mobile-friendly first, and possibly skip the non-mobile site altogether!

Creating a mobile site is certainly an added cost when building a new website, or even just retrofitting your current site to use responsive design. But, the minor amount invested up front can translate to returns many times over if a customer can view a menu, find out if an item is in stock, or verify that you provide a service while they’re in the prime instant gratification mode and ready to pull the trigger.

For many situations, WordPress can be a great solution to solve the mobile site quandary. Themes can easily be made responsive without much (if any) affect on the back end of the site, and there are numerous options by the way of plugins for enhancing the mobile experience. Responsive menus, mobile-only content, localization, and many other functions are as simple as installing the appropriate plugin and configuring a few settings. There really is no excuse to have only a desktop site with WordPress!

Whether you decide to create a unique mobile experience for your users, or simply make your site take advantage of responsive design techniques, the payoff is pretty clear. Don’t turn away potential profits by turning your back on mobile users.

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