Mobile devices have become one of the most important players on the consumer scene. Just look at everything people use them for—communication, leisure, Angry Birds…the list goes on and on. One of the most important things people use mobile devices for is research. From looking up deals in neighborhood restaurants to deciding whether to buy product A or product B, it’s become an indispensable tool for many consumers. But behind the shiny buttons popping out from the touch screen is a field that’s still clouded in lots of mystery. Even expert marketers are still trying to get a grasp on this technology. So to help you understand better, we provide three advantages for having a mobile optimized website for your business.
1. Mobile compatible design improves SEO
Web developers and designers know that when Google recommends a course of action, it’s usually a good idea to follow it, if your goal is to increase your search rankings.
In an attempt to clarify the message to web developers, Google has specifically stated that responsive design “is Google’s recommended configuration.” I believe this statement says it all.
If you employ responsive design, you’ll have more equity in your back-links.
There have been several times I have wanted to share a link from my iPhone, but when copying and pasting that link in an email, the link copied is the link to the mobile site. Anyone who clicks on this link in full size browser is going to be taken to the mobile site, and if they are not redirected, they are treated to content that is not optimized for their screen.
No one wants to see a mobile site on their desktop, so they bounce. If you design your site responsively, every link that is shared is a link to your full site and mobile site.
For a mobile site, and for that matter, every site, SEO and user experience are related. If your site is unpleasant to use and the user can’t find what they are looking for, you have a quick exit.
This will cause your bounce rate to grow, which signals to Google that your site probably does not have what the person was searching for. Winner, winner chicken dinner! You’ve just been knocked down in the rankings for the term that user searched for.
This can be avoided by having a mobile compatible site that looks great and functions extremely well and has all the content of your full size browser version.
By all means, do not use a plug-in that “converts” your site to a mobile site. There was a time and place for that, but that time has passed. There are a few things in this world more ugly and unsightful that visiting a site on my phone or tablet and have it redirect to the bland mobile version.
2. Mobile optimized design is easier to maintain
For sites that create a lot of content, it can be very challenging to make sure that all of this rich content is transferred properly.
You will have to spend more time, or pay someone else to spend time copying and formatting content to multiple places. If your site is designed responsively, when you are finished creating content, you’re finished!
With responsive design, your site is also future-proof. Many mobile-only sites have to be constantly tweaked when a new device comes on the market. Mobile responsive design ensures that your site will be optimized regardless of the device screen size.
3. Mobile optimized design delivers a much better reading experience
Some content producers think you should develop content per device. Only publishing the content that they believe appeals to mobile users, or removing content that they determine to be not important. Mobile users can and will do anything and everything that desktop users will do provided it is presented in a usable way.
If you are not developing and designing your entire site with mobile users in mind, it does not matter if you employ a responsive design or have a separate mobile site.
Several studies have shown that mobile devices, mobile usage and mobile purchases continue to rise at an exponential rate. This trend will not slow in the future, but only increase.
To be successful on the web, you must begin your process with a strategy that puts mobile responsive design first.