Mobile device usage is more prominent today than traditional desktop computing. If your site doesn’t provide an enticing mobile experience, you will lose business
Are you reading this article on a mobile device? If you are, then you already know what the No. 1 benefit is of visiting a website that is responsive: you can easily view, navigate, and interact with it regardless of the computing device you’re using.
That’s the gist of what’s known as responsive web design. Whenever someone surfs to your website on a mobile device, the site automatically optimizes its appearance to conform to the size of the screen accessing it. For sites that feature e-commerce capabilities, a responsive website is all the more important given m-commerce (mobile commerce) is gaining traction year-over-year. For instance, during the 2015 festive holiday season stateside, consumers’ mobile sales (58.9%) trumped desktop-based sales (41.1%). From a global perspective, consultancy Research and Markets forecast the mobile wallet market will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 34.58% by revenue through to 2020, and that one of its key drivers will be high m-commerce transaction volumes.
“The future is mobile computing – smartphones and tablets are just elements of it. The industry is on the verge of a whole new paradigm.”
– THORSTEN HEINS
Regrettably, Statistics Canada data shows a dismal 19% of Canadian companies have responsive websites. According to research conducted by technology and networking solution provider Cisco Systems, responsive web design has become increasingly important as the amount of global mobile traffic now accounts for more than half of total internet traffic. Moreover, the number of global mobile devices that connected to the ’net in 2015 grew to 7.9 billion, up from 7.3 billion in 2014. Of those estimated 563 million new mobile devices, smartphones accounted for most of the growth.
Think about that for a moment. In all likelihood, your customers and potential customers aren’t visiting your website using a laptop or a desktop computer, but a smartphone or a tablet.
Why You Need a Responsive Website
There are four primary benefits of having a responsive website:
- Increased visibility. When it comes to local searches, 50% of consumers who do so on a smartphone visit the business within 24 hours, and local mobile-based searches lead to more sales (18%) than non-local searches (7%).
- M-commerce is the future. Currently, mobile phones are the most widely used computing devices on Earth. As more people access the internet via a phone or tablet, more people are using them to purchase goods and services. Additionally, solution provider mporium (formerly MoPowered) estimates 30% of mobile shoppers will abandon a transaction if the shopping experience is not optimized for a mobile device.
- It will juice your SEO ranking. In the ongoing effort to up or maintain your site’s search engine optimization (SEO) ranking, a responsive site has to factor into the equation. Google favours responsive sites. In fact, responsive design is Google’s recommended design pattern.
- A lack of speed kills. Page load times and streamlined experiences on mobile devices are extremely important. According to a Google/Ipsos study, an estimated 29% of smartphone users will immediately switch to another site or app if they can’t find the information they want or if the site loads too slowly.