Did you know that 65% of marketing emails are opened on a mobile device?
Which begs the question: Is your site mobile optimized?
This may seem like a silly question to those of you that have already optimized your site to fit mobile devices while many others may be scratching their heads or wrinkling their noses in confusion.
Here’s a bulletin: Mobile optimized sites or responsive design websites should no longer be an option, but a necessity if you have any hopes of being a profitable online business.
Okay, so Email Marketing is just one iota of the entire web marketing matrix. But, we will discuss it nonetheless. When you send out emails, newsletters or any other correspondence to your consumers that direct them to your website, you should expect a vast majority of them to access it from their tablet or smartphone. And when they do, what will they see and experience when they navigate to your site?
Are your margins off? Do you have overlaying text? Is your font a proper size? Does your website lose its character?
If you can answer yes to any of these questions, it is time to consider getting, NO, get a responsive design, now.
Responsive design not only makes your website look sleek and pretty to a consumer, but it also looks superb to search engines.
Remember; Google, Yahoo and Bing don’t solely exist on desktop computers. They exist EVERYWHERE and fit every device. Shouldn’t your website do the same?
Your content manager, copywriter, photographer, graphic designer and other members of your staff have worked too hard to present the world with quality content to have it distorted and scrambled by ill-fitting pages that pop up on varying devices.
When a website is optimized to fit any screen regardless of its size or resolution you are ensuring that your web content is easily consumed by the people that matter.
It is now, more important than ever for websites to be mobile optimized since the world as a whole is using a varying number of devices to surf the web, make purchases and read emails. For those still skeptical about the powers of responsive design and SEO and web marketing tactics, or who have read countless articles about how it can hurt your SEO efforts, consider this statement from Google:
Google supports three different configurations for creating smartphone-optimized websites:
- Responsive design: serves the same HTML for one URL and uses CSS media queries to determine how the content is rendered on the client side. This removes the possible glitches of user-agent detection and frees users from redirects. This is Google’s recommended configuration.
- Dynamic serving: serves different HTML for one URL depending on the user-agent. Use the Vary HTTP header to indicate you’re doing this.
- Separate mobile site: redirects users to a different URL depending on the user-agent. Use bidirectional link annotations to indicate the relationship between the two URLs for search engines.
Yep, Google said it was a recommended configuration. Responsive design also only contains one URL and the same HTML regardless of the device; meaning, there aren’t two or three or four different URLs for the same site creating confusion and ugly results when a user pulls one up in their browser.
What about having a separate mobile site?
Well, we are glad you asked. When a separate mobile site is used, a different URL is used and is read by Google as a totally different site, thus making the traffic different and analytics different for both sites. So, your rank can be affected due to the confusion of two sites with duplicate content.
It also harder to manage two separate sites as opposed to one which means double the work for you and your search engines.
Which should I choose?
If you are new to the world of web design and a web design firm asks you whether you would like a basic website or a responsive, the best response would be responsive. While it may be more expensive, you will reap the rewards of an easily accessible website that will help pump up your viewership, reduce bounce rates and help your ranking within search engines. For those who already have a mobile site, consider ditching it and have your website converted to a responsive one, so the next time you send out an email and a person navigates to your site they will experience the best possible site regardless of their device size or make. If a user wants to share your site with friends, their friends aren’t directed to a crappy site that doesn’t fit their devices. This leaves you with peace of mind and a potential consumer to boot.
All in all, web design is an art. If the art doesn’t fit the frame do you scrap the art, or do you scrap the frame? A user will almost never scrap the frame—they’ll just find another piece of art. So, make sure your art matches every frame.