Before answering the question of “Why do we need responsive websites” let’s consider what the term ‘responsive website’ means.
What is a responsive website?
Web designers create a web page that responds to, or re-sizes itself dependent upon the type of device a user is accessing the site through.
This means that whether you are viewing web pages on a large desktop monitor, a laptop of varying screen size, a 10” tablet or a 4” smartphone screen, the user will receive the same viewing experience. The design is achieved by using what are known as ‘fluid grids’ rather than with traditional pixels. Fluid grids mean that all page elements are sized by proportion.
The reality of implementing a responsive design is that a company has one site containing different elements which respond differently no matter what the screen size is of the device it is being used on.
Why is this so important?
The rise in the use of mobile devices of various designs is a major reason for companies to provide responsive websites. It should be appreciated by companies of all sizes that the customer experience when visiting your website is key to whether they stay and explore and whether they bother to return again.
Visitors who stay and subsequently return are what a company needs in order to boost brand recognition and promote products and services. While interesting content and access to such things as tutorials and webinars are extremely important, it is ease of access that visitors are looking for.
Offering the same viewing experience:
Those accessing your site via a traditional computer terminal or laptop have large screens on which to appreciate your web design, but those using smartphones and mobile devices have a more limited screen size. Traditional web design means that they may well see things differently when accessing via a mobile device. This leads to a far less satisfying experience and the likelihood they will exit your site much sooner than if they were able to enjoy your site design exactly as you wish them to see it.
Realise the importance of responsive web design:
This automatic adjustment gives flexibility in terms of the viewing experience and shows that you are catering to visitor needs and any company looking for the answer to “Why do we need responsive web design” should start by analysing their visitor traffic statistics. These define whether a visitor is coming from a fixed or mobile device.
The percentage of visits from mobile devices will surprise many, and it is these visitors you should consider when deciding to apply responsive web design. Many companies are now seeing over 50% of visitors to their site arriving via a smartphone or mobile device and one thing is for certain, the number of visitors to all sites via such devices is only going to increase.
Catering for your mobile visitors is a must if you are looking to give them a customer experience to remember and just as importantly, one they want to repeat!
That's all for now:
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Having worked in the City within Financial Technology developing and supporting financial software, banking intranets and websites, Stuart seized the opportunity to take the experienced gained to start his own company within his passion for digital marketing.