The answer is usually going to be yes. With Google’s latest algorithm placing a higher priority on sites that are mobile friendly, you really can’t afford to skip out on either a mobile or a responsive version of your site, but mobile versions of websites are also going out of style by and large. You will find that major sites, including the New York Times, are making the subtle switch to Responsive designs when possible, and a lot of popular sites are following suite. The reason may be simpler than we think, too.
- Smartphone and desktop traffic are almost equal at this point. For some sites, they can even slant heavily in favor of mobile traffic. The numbers show that 3.11% of visitors on desktop traffic were included in conversion rates, while tablets and smartphones were at 2.59% and 1.01% respectively; a combined 3.6%, in other words. That means that you could be seeing far more conversions with your mobile customers if you don’t already have a mobile solution in place for a website. From a business standpoint, it just makes sense to go with a mobile friendly design, and responsive designs are as mobile friendly as they get.
- Mobile domains aren’t always enough, as you will notice with the plethora of different screen sizes, or viewports, available at any given time these days. There are 5 inch smart phones, 7 inch tablets, 12 inch tablets, and just about any size that you can imagine, whereas when mobile sites were initially conceived, there were really a handful of standard mobile resolutions. The world is changing, and so are the expectations of your incoming traffic. Responsive sites allow you to set a group of parameters that will cater to those incoming groups, regardless of the size of their screen, which is good news for you.
- Almost half of users are turned off by a lack of mobile friendly site. 48% of them responded that there are many things that turn them away, but that a lack of a mobile option makes them feel like they aren’t being considered as being valuable traffic. That speaks volumes for sites that rely on e-commerce and the idea of good salesmanship. It’s almost akin to not having a parking lot– you may be getting street traffic alone, but without parking spaces, you could be missing out on a lot more foot traffic. Ignoring that much of the potential customer base is a mistake for web design, even if you’re just writing a blog. Keeping your site mobile friendly keeps the doors open.
Responsive design isn’t an easy task, and many sites would need to be completely rebuilt to accommodate for it, but the end result will be a very nice investment in the future of mobile viewports to come, all without sacrificing the traffic you get from the valuable desktop demographic as well. It’s a win, if you can do it well.