There is NO doubt that Responsive Web Design is very important with regards to the usage of online media in today’s era.
Smartphone and tablet usage has been more than ever; so does the importance of mobile-friendly websites. Smartphones and tablets have changed the approach toward design and user experience. Interacting with websites on smartphones and tablets is not the same as doing that on a desktop computer monitors. Factors such as Click versus Touch, Screen-size, Pixel-resolution; support for Adobe’s Flash technology, optimized markup and many more have become crucial; whilst creating websites with Responsive Design.
If SEO is a core component of your digital marketing strategy, having a mobile–friendly website is becoming essential. Mobile sales have already overtaken desktop sales. It is only logical that mobile search will overtake desktop search at some point in the near future as well.
First of all it is important to understand exactly what is responsiveness? Responsive Web Design (RWD) is an approach of laying-out and coding a website; such that the website provides an optimal viewing experience — ease of reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling — across a wide range of devices (from desktop computer monitors to mobile phones).
Responsive Design should be ensure that the website’s navigation elements, screen-layouts, text, images, and other UI elements re-adjust themselves on a variety of devices. Thus, one need not spend extra time and money in creating and maintaining one “mobile-site version” and another “desktop-site version” of her website.
Advantages of responsive website
1) Powerfully Flexible
Responsive web design sites are fluid, meaning the content moves freely across all screen resolutions and all devices. Both the grids and the images are fluid. Just as a liquid spreads out to allow its content to fill an allotted space and retain its appearance; responsive web design’s fluidity achieves the same result with website content on a device screen.
2) Better User Experience
While, content is king and discoverability of content are foremost success metrics; it is the user experience that enables visitors to consume content on any website through the device; regardless of their choice and preference, anytime. Thus, responsive web design is about providing the optimal user experience; irrespective of whether they use a desktop computer, a smartphone, a tablet or a smart-TV. Responsive web design accommodates the busy professional; during the day and the wide-awake college student needing access to your site anytime. No scrolling or resizing is needed for any visitor on any device.
3) Cost Effective
The advantages of having a single site are significant if compared to having two separate sites. One website costs less than two, and the savings can be substantial. Sites designed solely for mobile device traffic don’t offer the advanced navigational techniques found in traditional websites. And they also require the user to maintain two separate web addresses for your site. This is inconvenient for most people and can cause them to check out the competition’s website. Responsive web design enhances SEO efforts by having all your visitors directed to a single site. No matter what they prefer to use as a device.
4) Google Likes It!
Google prefers responsive web design. Why? Because content that lives on one website and one URL is much easier for users to share; interact with; and link to than content that lives on a separate mobile site. Take for example a mobile user who shares content from a mobile site with a friend on Facebook; who then accesses that content using a desktop. Which results in that user viewing a stripped down mobile site on their desktop. This creates a less than optimal user-experience. And because of the large emphasis Google is now placing on user-experience as a ranking factor; this is essential to take into account with regards to SEO.
5) Very Easy to Manage
Managing one site and one SEO campaign is far easier than managing two sites and two SEO campaigns. This is a key advantage a responsive website has over a separate mobile site. That being said, there are benefits to having a mobile-specific SEO strategy; such as optimizing for keywords that are more likely to be searched when someone is on their smartphone.
So choose wisely and analyze these points if you have yet to consider yourself a responsive website. At Adweb Studio we suggest responsiveness to the highest level; mostly because it’s important to stand out as a professional business or individual. After all it’s your first impression for mobile users at the first place.