Updating Your Website with Responsive Design
If you haven’t updated your website within the last two years, there’s a good chance it doesn’t employ responsive design. That means it’s already out of date. It doesn’t matter how much money you spent or how “future proof” the people who designed it to be. As we develop new ways to consume content, updating to how we present that content is the constant responsibility for any business that wants to stay relevant.
Why websites become obsolete
Mobile traffic now represents more than half of all online activity. In 2013, for users aged 18-34 that number was around 18 percent. By the following year, it was up to about 21 percent. At the end of 2016, the projected number was around 56 percent. Clearly, there is a measurable trend and that is why you need to update often. New technologies are emerging every day to make the mobile experience faster, easier, and more immersive.
Current mobile trends
People are using their smartphones and tablets to do everything online today. According to Google, we now make more searches with mobiles than desktop. Moreover, those searches are yielding results. Of local smartphone searches, 76 percent result in a visit to a local business within a day, and 28 percent result in a purchase.
There have been major advances in responsive website design over the past few years. Responsive design aids in creating websites that optimize the viewing experience across all mobile platforms. A modern responsive website adapts to traffic from different browsers, rather than exists as a separate site. A separate site is not a as mobile friendly as one might think.
Responsiveness is rooted in the idea of a single site that reacts to suit different browsers. Users should have a similar experience on a mobile device compared with a desktop, without sacrificing quality or overall experience. A responsive website is mobile friendly without needing a separate site. Today’s user wants to feel a sense of inclusion with your brand. That means not sending mixed messages when it comes to content delivery.
How does your site measure up?
Using this simple 5-point mobile ready checklist, you can use to gauge the overall responsive design of your website. Follow these steps and you will have a much clearer idea of whether or not your site is really mobile ready.
Point #1: Test for mobile readiness
Start by opening your website in a desktop browser and resize your browser window by dragging a corner towards the center of the screen. As you decrease the size of the window, does your website automatically compact to fit its current display, or does the window simply get smaller and cut off the content around the edges? If it’s the latter, your site is not responsive.
Now open your site on a smartphone and tap your contact details, like a phone number or email address. What happens? If all it does is highlight the text, your site is not responsive. It should open the appropriate app and allow you to directly call or email.
Point #2: Use an emulator
An emulator is a programme that mimics another. Once you’ve checked your site’s responsiveness and appearance on your own devices, double-check it against different manufacturers and operating systems using a specialist emulator such as ResponsiveDesignChecker. What words well in one OS might not look right in another.
Point #3: Test for Adobe Flash
If your site has animations of any kind, right click on one and see if “About Adobe Flash” appears in the dialog box. iPhone and iPad do not support flash so if your website uses it, that content will not load on any device running iOS.
Point #4: Test for social media integration
Do you have a blog or news page on your website? When you post new articles to your blog, are guests able to easily share them on their own social media pages? If they can’t (or if you haven’t employed this functionality), your site is missing an essential marketing element found in truly mobile friendly sites.
Point #5: Check navigation
On your desktop site you might have an elaborate menu with numerous links, but how does that look on a mobile browser? Forcing users to scroll outside the margins looking for navigation links, or providing too many links to easily select the correct one with a couple of finger swipes, will put visitors off returning to your site.
What can I do if my website is out of date?
If your site fails just one of the above tests, it needs to be updated. You are competing against a swarm of competitive sites, many of which are already mobile ready and benefiting from new advances in responsive design. If your site is not on a level playing field with your competition, you are already losing a significant market share. The good news is that updating is faster and easier than ever.
Winning websites have good responsiveness built in. Responsive sites both save and earn more money than older, antiquated ones. The professionals at TechTe.am can easily pinpoint issues with your site and correct them with little or no downtime. Let’s get started today.