You’ve probably heard the term “responsive” tossed around heavily lately. If you’re not sure what it means, responsive design is a method of coding and laying out a website that always delivers the best viewing and navigation experience: whether on desktops, smartphones or tablets. That means the site is built to respond to the device it’s being viewed on and adapt itself accordingly. If a business or brand is not using a responsive design by now, it should be. Mobile traffic has surpassed desktop traffic for the first time, yet only 15% of websites are "fully responsive."
It’s kind of shocking to realize that 85% of businesses on the web are missing the chance to engage users on the devices they’re increasingly more likely to shop and search on.
If you’re just starting to realize how important redesigning your website for mobile is, we’ve compiled a few performance metrics that signal when it’s time to go responsive.
1. Mobile traffic is growing!
According to InMobi, 60% of Internet access is via a mobile device, while only 11% is via a desktop. As more people access the web via smartphones and tablets, your site may see an increase in the number of mobile visitors. More mobile users visiting your site means it's time to adopt a responsive web design to cater to this growing audience.
One of our clients recently took the plunge. After seeing mobile visitors increase, Ross Stores, Inc. decided to adopt a responsive web redesign to better reach its audience. Once completed, mobile users spent 40% more time engaging with the new site and viewed nearly 30% more pages. Learn more about our redesign for Ross here.
2. Overall site traffic is down.
You’re probably thinking, more mobile visitors is great, right? Just more traffic to the site. Wrong - especially if visitors are landing on your site and leaving instantly. If visitors on smartphones or tablets are not offered a mobile-friendly experience, they may stop coming to your site completely. That’s when sessions or visits start to dwindle (and bounce rates skyrocket).
Believe it or not, 48% of mobile users say that if they arrive on a business’ site that isn’t working well on a mobile device, they take it as an indication of the business simply not caring. It’s a hard pill to swallow, but people take performance very seriously when researching and shopping. More and more people are starting to view websites as a digital representation of a brand’s values and intent, and if they can’t accomplish their goals on one business' site, they will seek out a mobile-friendly competitor.
3. Low conversion rates.
The true test of a website’s worth is its ability to get visitors to purchase, subscribe or share. If a site can’t convert, it loses its value. For mobile users, when a site is not responsive, ads, text or buttons may not appear correctly or be clickable at all, translating to lost leads and sales. Last year (2014), the Aberdeen Group confirmed that visitor-to-buyer conversion rates for responsive sites were 4x that of non-responsive sites. Embrace a responsive redesign as an opportunity to jumpstart your conversion rates by streamlining purchase paths or facilitating repeat visits, particularly if mobile usage is predicted to increase in your industry.
For businesses slow to adapt to mobile, there may be serious penalties on the horizon. In April 2015, Google announced the release of a new algorithm that ranks results by their mobile-friendliness, improving the placement of mobile-friendly sites when searched on smartphones. Use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool to analyze your website. If it turns out your site is not mobile-friendly and you’d like to change that, let us show you what you’ve been missing.