responsive website design

Do I Really Need A Responsive Web Design For My Website?

The number of those surfing the web on phones and tablets has skyrocketed these past few years, exceeding the number of internet surfers on desktop in early 2015. What’s more is Google’s mobile-friendly algorithm (aka ‘Mobilegeddon’) update in April of last year, boosted the rankings of mobile-friendly websites and served as a wake-up call for webmasters worldwide to cater to the growing number of mobile internet users.

One of the most popular techniques nowadays in designing a website with the same look and feel across a variety of platforms is through the use of responsive web design.

Responsive web design, or RWD, is the technique of creating websites that can be viewed and experienced seamlessly on whatever screen size, from 4-inch phones, to 27-inch desktop displays. This is all thanks to coding that can detect the device the user is on, and then automatically refit and modify the elements on the page for the most optimal viewing experience possible.

Knowing the powerful capabilities of responsive design, let’s look more closely at some of the reasons why your site needs to take advantage of this.

Rank Better in SEO

As mentioned earlier, Google came out with an algorithm in April 2015 that favors mobile-friendly sites, bringing them to the top of relevant searches. Those that weren’t optimized for smaller screens, on the other hand, were pushed down to the bottom.

Aside from being much easier to read and navigate, responsive websites are given a boost in SEO rankings by the search giant because they have just one URL, making it quicker to crawl and index, not to mention that viewing an un-optimized site on a smaller screen will likely result in increased bounce rates, further denting your rankings.

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Only One URL Needed

In the not-too-distant past, the solution – more like the workaround – for viewing websites on a smaller screen was by having a dedicated mobile site, also called an m-dot. The big disadvantage of offering m-dots for mobile users was – aside from being a simplified version of the desktop site – it had a separate URL. Several issues arose from dedicated mobile sites, one of them being redirects, which slowed down loading and affected SEO.

On the flip side, by opting for a responsive site, the transition from desktop to mobile and vice-versa won’t be as jarring.

Improved Loading Speed

None of us like having to wait a long time for a website to load, even on a relatively fast internet connection. However, with responsive web design, these waiting times can be reduced, especially on mobile devices where a page should load within two seconds.

In Closing

Designing and developing Responsive Web Design websites will only become even more important in the near future, taking into account the continuing growth of internet usage on phones and tablets. If you haven’t switched over to a responsive web design yet, now’s the perfect time to do so!

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