You Need a Responsive Website! Google Says So

Roy McClean
Sep 16, 2014
You Need a Responsive Website! Google Says So

Let's start off with this. So what is a responsive website? … cuz you can't know what you need if you don't know what you need!

Responsive web design, often referred to as RWD, is an approach to web design and development that provides the best viewing experience. Responsive design is aimed at providing easy reading and smart navigation presented with a minimum of resizing, panning and scrolling. A well built responsive website presents well on any device from smartphones and tablets to laptops and desktops to larger screens like a TV or other larger monitor.

A well built responsive design website is like a shape-shifter! The website's presentation adjusts to the screen it's viewed on. Often things stack on smaller devices. On larger screens website elements 'stretch out'.

So Why Responsive Design?

Google Likes (Demands) RWD

Google likes RWD and is constantly recommending it. Some highly regarded web gurus are even suggesting Google is demanding responsive web design and they are rewarding responsive design over "old school" design in search engine rankings. If you can rank higher for important keywords in Google (or BING or Yahoo) why wouldn't rush to get your website responsive?

RWD is Better for Search Engine Optimization

A responsive website can make SEO easier. First, if you have a desktop version of your website and a mobile version (or an app) that's a hassle. Keeping content on more than website up-to-date and optimized can be tough. We often see content that is out-of-sync on a mobile device when compared to a desktop version. And if you have more than one website with the same content that can cause duplicate content issues. If you don't know what this means and you have a website you should. Why? Duplicate content can get you into big trouble with Google resulting in penalties and potentially huge decreases in search traffic.

It's a better user experience, especially for mobile users

And this is a large reason why Google is so "in favour" of RWD. Responsive websites (typically) offer the same content and information on any device. Not only that RWD actually optimizes content dependent on the device. Font sizes will adjust for mobile devices. Often that means a slightly larger font size might load when viewing the device on a smartphone. No squinting or resizing required!

And the World is Going Mobile

I hope this isn't new news to you. According to a 2014 IDC report smartphones will reach 1.2 billion (yes, that's with a "B") units before the end of this year. That's up over 23% from 2013. If you aren't offering a great experience for smartphone users good luck to you!

And Increased Conversions Result with RWD

So you've got Google potentially rewarding RWD and you've got a better user experience, especially for smartphones and even tablets. It's no wonder that conversions (like sales, leads, and engagement) are typically the end result after a new responsive website is launched.

A new responsive website

On that note we're delighted to present our most recent website redesign: It's built on a responsive web design platform.

Responsive web design: Pemberton Valley Dental

Why did we go responsive for Pemberton Valley Dental? …well, did you read above? Yup. But before we built the website we poked around their old website analytics data and saw that their website traffic from mobile devices was increasing significantly. But this mobile traffic was resulting in very poor web performance. Mobile users had a much higher bounce rate ("I came, I saw, I puked and left."), lower average time on site stats, and virtually no leads via the website's old contact form. This was the result of a poor website experience for mobile users!

Since the new website has been launched conversions have increased. Leads by phone and the website's contact and "Request an Appointment" forms have increased. Mobile stats are way better with lower bounce rates, and higher average times on site with more engagement with the most popular pages.

These findings are typical of the improved website performance every time we convert an "old school" static website to a new responsive layout.

Still Not Convinced About RWD?

Well, then you might want to give up on your website being a sales generator because your competition will eat our lunch. Google might add their "vote" about your website too. This means presenting lower search results for your website!

The good news is that responsive design is pretty easy to get into. And it can be very affordable and well worth the investment.

Google recommends RWD, website visitors like it better and that's why we don't build any website without a responsive web design platform!

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