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Mobile-friendly web design . . . the Web has changed

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Mobile-friendly web design started to become important a number of  years ago, as more people started to use tablets and smartphones, and it is now considered essential that when you build a website, you have to ensure it is mobile-friendly /responsive.

I had an enquiry recently from a potential client who complained that traffic to his website had dropped dramatically in the last couple of years. His business was suffering as a result. He couldn’t understand how this was happening as his services and products had remained the same over that time. Apart from the low number of sales he generated online, his business was generally doing ok.

Curious, I took a quick look at his website and saw a problem immediately – his site was not mobile-friendly. It was a pretty good site otherwise– it displayed his services well, it was attractive and had good content – but it had been built over 5 years ago and was not designed for mobile devices. To compete in today’s environment, you need to build a website the mobile-friendly way, using a responsive framework such as Bootstrap or Foundation

Build a website the mobile-friendly way

According to a recent report, the numbers of users accessing the web via mobile devices now exceeds those using conventional desktop computers, and has done for the last couple of years or so (source: http://www.smartinsights.com/mobile-marketing/mobile-marketing-analytics/mobile-marketing-statistics/, accessed 5 May 2016). So it’s not a case of “Should I build a website to be responsive?” , but rather “My website needs to responsive, designed mobile-first”.

To go back to my original query, my potential client faced a number of issues which were possibly impacting on his traffic.

  • It has been recognised for some time that search engines such as Google rank responsive websites higher than non-responsive ones in their search results (source: http://searchengineland.com/responsive-design-ranking-factor-228464, accessed 5 May 2016). Lower search rankings will lead to lower traffic.
  • Because responsive sites are displayed with a “Mobile-friendly” tag in search results, it is likely that users on mobile devices were less likely his site from the search results.
  • If users on mobile phones or tablets did select his site from the search results, it would have been difficult for them to navigate through it, diminishing user experience and making a return visit more unlikely.

The web has changed in the last five years as more and more people use smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices to access your site. If your website is not responsive, it needs to be, or you could find that your traffic, enquiries and sales drop to a point where you are left behind by the competition.

Mobile-friendly web design can boost SEO and enhances user experience, making return visits more likely. At Go Design, we specialise in mobile-friendly web design Cork and nationwide, building mobile-ready websites and online shops at an affordable cost for small business and SMEs. Check out our portfolio or contact us to see how we can help your business.

 

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