Small Business
Business INSIGHTS e-News for Professional Services
Why Your Firm's Website Needs Responsive Design

Having a mobile website is not enough--upgrade today.

If you've ever tried to navigate a PDF of a restaurant menu or download graphics on a smartphone, you know it can be frustrating. That's because most documents and websites were designed for the standard PC user. Tables, columns and graphics lose their impact or cause significant problems for mobile viewers on small screens.

Responsive design takes small screens and differing resolutions into account by optimizing websites and documents to mobile devices. The design is simple, leaves out extraneous content and adjusts the display according to the screen size of the device.

Here are reasons your firm should consider responsive design:

  • Clients are accessing your web content from smartphones and tablets. According to Pew Research, 63 percent of adult cell phone owners use their phones to access the Internet. For 21 percent of adult cell phone users, their phone is their main Internet access device. Many of these users look up some content on their phone, some on their tablet and some on their desktop computer.
  • If you have a mobile website, it's likely no longer adequate, due to the proliferation of so many types of mobile devices with differing screen sizes. And many mobile websites are just pared-down versions of the full website, which means clients who begin looking at content on their laptop won't be able to view that same data on their tablet. In responsive design, the client sees the same website regardless of their device.
  • With responsive design, you don't need to maintain both a website and a mobile site or mobile app--one website adjusts to fit the device.
  • Finally, a single website and URL makes it easier for Google to index your website in its search engine, so your company improves its search engine optimization (SEO) results.

A Responsive Design Checklist

When evaluating responsive design, keep in mind what users want. According to a 2012 Google survey, users are looking for:

  • a site that loads in less than five seconds
  • big, mobile-friendly buttons
  • limited scrolling and pinching
  • quick access to business contact information
  • "click to call" access
  • links to the company's social media profiles


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