The Case for Responsive Web Design for Mobile Web Sites
We get a ton of calls from clients asking us to create a mobile web site for them. Why are they calling? Probably because their clients are demanding it! We’re seeing over 40% of web site visitors using mobile devices for some of our sites. Google’s seen a 500% increase in mobile searches over the past few years.
The mobile web is still in its infancy and there are lots of competing options for offering a mobile experience to visitors. We offer three:
This is a true app that is downloaded from Google Play or the Apple App Store onto a mobile phone.
Stand Alone Mobile Web Site
Responsive Web Design (RWD)
This is a method of designing a web site so that it adapts to display well on desktop, laptop, tablet, and mobile browsers.
Each of these options has it’s place. For example, Facebook (and our client ListMyEvent.com) needs a mobile app to allow tight integration with your mobile phone contacts and messaging services. ESPN.com needs a stand alone mobile web site because delivering a customized mobile entertainment experience is one of it’s biggest selling points. However, for the vast majority of business and organization sites, responsive web design is the optimum mobile strategy.
While our staff has developed numerous mobile apps and stand along mobile web sites, responsive web design has a number of strong advantages for creating easy to manage and productive mobile web sites.
Lower maintenance cost
One of the issues with both mobile apps and stand alone mobile sites is that every time the content or messaging of the public web site changes, these other apps and sites need to be updated as well. With a responsive web design you simply update your public web site and your visitors’ mobile experience is updated as well.
Lower implementation cost
Because implementing a responsive web design is simply altering how the design of your main web site presents on different size screens it is much less expensive to implement than mobile apps or a stand alone mobile web site.
Wider device reach
Responsive web sites are not platform specific and work on any mobile device or tablet. If you go with mobile apps, individual apps must be developed for each platform (iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry, etc). Stand alone mobile sites generally rely on certain mobile platform specific attributes as well.
Better adaptation to future technologies
Responsive web design works by sensing the size of the screen and adjusting the content appropriately. This means that a responsive web site doesn’t care what model of mobile phone or tablet is being used to look at the site, it only cares about the size of the screen. No matter what new device comes out in the future, you can be reasonably sure that your responsive web site will work well with it.
If you want to see responsive web design in action, have a look at one of these sites on your mobile phone:
If you think that a responsive web design (or mobile app for that matter) may be just the ticket for your site, call us at 800-610-7044 or email HireUs@proclaiminteractive.com. We love developing compelling mobile experiences and can’t wait to get started on yours!