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5 Benefits of Responsive Web Design

Posted by Peter Saunders on Monday, January 20, 2014

With such a drastic and continued increase in mobile browsing, both experts and those new to web design and development are implementing responsive design when creating their websites in order reap the many rewards associated with it. If you are new to responsive websites here is your easy guide on what responsive website design is, and the benefits that await you in using it.

5 Benefits of Responsive Website Design

Responsive web design has many benefits to businesses and their website visitors/customers. With such a drastic and continued increase in mobile browsing, both experts and those new to web design and development are implementing responsive design when creating their websites in order reap the many rewards associated with it. If you are new to responsive websites here is your easy guide on what responsive website design is, and the benefits that await you in using it.


 

What You Should Know About Responsive Website Design

Responsive web design is a creation by Ethan Marcotte, who is not only a web designer and developer by profession, but who also works as an author and speaker. In his article entitled “A List Apart”, Marcotte discussed the foundation of creating a more flexible and at the same time adaptive design approach for websites.

Most people confuse this approach in website design as a single technology. It isn't; it's a combination of various techniques and technological ideas. This method increases the web design’s flexibility and adaptability, allowing any website implementing the design to cope with the dynamic nature of technology and the web.

To illustrate, a website design that is not responsive, or the usual web design, will look different and even distorted when you view it using your mobile devices, e.g. smartphones and tablets. The design fails to adapt to the requirements of the mobile devices, hence, the distortions or unnatural look of the website. This approach forces the user to continually zoom in and out as well as scrolling from left to right in order to read content. It is not an optimal viewing experience and can frustrate visitors to the point where they will leave in order to find a website that is easier to navigate on their chosen device.

A responsive website design addresses this problem. It allows a scaled version of the website for greater flexibility and adaptability. When you view a site that implements the responsive approach on your mobile browsers, the site will adapt to suit the size of the screen the viewer is using to browse it. This create a positive user experience.

With this approach, you do not have to create different versions of your website to suit mobile browsers. Your audience can shift from the desktop version of your website to view it on their smartphones or tablets without difficulty.

You are therefore building a single version of a website that caters to multiple devices, such as desktop and mobile. The website responds to its environment as well as to the behavior of the users. If the user decides to view the site from their laptop and then switches to browse it on their smartphone, the website automatically adjusts to fit the new screen resolution, re-sizing the site's content and images to suit the new device.

You have several benefits to gain from implementing a responsive website design. Here are 5 of the biggest benefits:

 

1. Retain Existing Site Traffic

Statistics show that the number of users accessing the internet through their mobile devices is rapidly increasing. I've personally never been a tablet fan but after receiving one for Christmas I am now constantly accessing the web while on the move. Consequently I've given up browsing certain websites as frequently because they are difficult to read and navigate on my tablet. Giving mobile browsers sub-optimal experience in browsing your website increases your chances of losing your existing and potential future traffic.

 

2. Increase your mobile visitors AND desktop visitors with a responsive website

You have better chances of sustaining and earning more traffic with a responsive website. Considering the competition for your traffic’s attention, it is essential and important that you provide them with the best browsing experience possible.

With the rapidly increasing mobile population of users browsing the internet via their smartphones or tablets, you need to make sure that your website is mobile-friendly. Otherwise, your bounce rate will shoot up and your visitors will switch from your website to a competitor's site.

In a Forbes article, results of one study shows how the subject’s site traffic from mobile devices increased rapidly, and has doubled the traffic it is getting from desktop visits. In another study, results show that the subject’s mobile traffic is almost equal to the percentage of its desktop traffic.

 

3. Save Valuable Resources

A responsive web design allows you to save your valuable resources such as time, effort, and money. This is because you only need to create a single version of your website, which will save you on monetary cost if you are outsourcing it, or time and energy if you are developing and designing the website yourself.

You only need to update one version of your website. You do not have to worry about developing and optimizing several versions for different devices that will only increase the cost, whether in terms of money, time, or energy.

With streamlined optimization of your website, you will gain better ranking in the search engines to increase the visibility and traffic of your site.

 

4. Increase in your conversion rates leading to an increase in your business profits.

Check any data or statistics, and you will quickly realise that a high percentage of users do not hesitate to abandon websites that take too long to load or are difficult to view and navigate.

Online consumers have short patience and tolerance, considering how fast and easy they can shift from one website to another. The attention and satisfaction of your target traffic or leads is crucial in increasing your conversion rate. Online consumers are most likely to buy from websites that give them optimal browsing experience.

 

5. Widen Your Competitive Advantage

A responsive web design enables you to widen your competitive advantage. Be one of the first movers to implement a responsive website to bolster and sustain your lead over your competition. Online consumers have the tendency to stay loyal to websites that satisfy their browsing needs and expectations.

With a responsive website, you will be able to satisfy the entire experience of your traffic in browsing your website. If you have the right content as well, your traffic will not find the need and the urge to browse other websites, especially that of your competition.

 
 

These are just five of the benefits you can enjoy from making your website design responsive. There are many further benefits such as increasing the loading times of your site on mobile devices by dropping large graphics that appear on the desktop version. Utilising click-to-call functions on your mobile site so that a visitor can simply click on the number or a button and immediately dial your company phone number from their smartphone. You can also begin to utilise Quick Response (QR) Codes in your print promotions that allow consumers to scan the code and immediately be taken to your website. This obviously works best if your website is responsive and adapts beautifully to a smartphone.

The design of your responsive website will have great impact on the functionality, flexibility, and adaptability of your website. This will certainly increase the satisfaction and improve the browsing experience of your traffic whether they access your site from desktop PCs and laptops or from their smartphones and tablets.

With a responsive web design, your website will surely be able to earn increased ranking and visibility, an increase in conversion rates, more traffic, and greater profitability for your business. How can you not respond in favor of this approach?

 


About the author

Peter Saunders is a multifacted graphic designer that has worked as a designer, printer and print finisher. All three jobs have given him an excellent understanding of everything involved in creating print marketing. At After Hours Creative, Peter splits his time between graphic design, getting his hands covered in ink, operating foil presses and taking naps on his adobe cushions (only when working late, he's not lazy!). Peter is the go-to guy for any artwork queries or anything related to print!

Peter Saunders is a multifacted graphic designer that has worked as a designer, printer and print finisher. All three jobs have given him an excellent understanding of everything involved in creating print marketing. At After Hours Creative, Peter splits his time between graphic design, getting his hands covered in ink, operating foil presses and taking naps on his adobe cushions (only when working late, he's not lazy!). Peter is the go-to guy for any artwork queries or anything related to print!

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