In May 2016 Mark Harari wrote about “5 Critical Elements to Having an Awesome Remodeling Website..” and in that post he emphasized the importance of your company’s website being “responsive” to mobile users. A year later we look further into why it’s critical to your business and if you haven’t addressed this, why you should be by the end of 2017.
First, what is Responsive web design?
To deliver a mobile experience in the past, we would attempt to “sniff” what device the user was using and deliver the version that would show best on their browser; too often businesses had to maintain a mobile site AND a desktop version. With Responsive web design we can now create a single website that responds to the size of a user’s device—with one URL and one content source, typically driven by a Content Management System (CMS) like WordPress. A responsive website has a “fluid” layout which adjusts text, graphics, forms, etc. according to the screen size and in some instances, by device.
Is my website responsive?
It may be, but a very easy and fast way to determine that is to click on this website analysis tool that Google has provided to website owners and administrators.
Why Is Having a Responsive Website Important to Your Remodeling Business?
- Mobile Users now Surpass Desktop Users: As Mark pointed out last year, the trend of users visiting websites on their Smartphone has increased exponentially over the past 3-4 years. Currently 69% of American adults own a Smartphone and 60% of all Internet use is now on a mobile device. If I can use the analogy of transitioning from Black & White TV to Color in the 60’s… If you are not presenting your website in a format that responds to a mobile user, you are not responding quickly enough to how most potential clients are consuming media.
- Better Search Results: So not only are more users consuming information on the web on a mobile device, more importantly they are searching for your products & services in that environment as well. With more than 100 billion searches on Google every month, Google has responded to this shift in consumer behavior by altering their search algorithms, which now reward websites that are “mobile-friendly” with better search results.
- Better Overall User Experience: If you have ever tried to navigate a non-mobile-friendly website on your smartphone you can quickly experience what prospective clients are going through when trying to do business with you, if you have yet to make the transition. Viewing text and images, clicking on navigation elements and more importantly attempting to convert by filling out a form is next to impossible.
- Landing or “Squeeze” Pages are More Effective: By insuring that your website can be viewed effectively on a mobile device, you stand a better chance at catching users toward the end of their buying decision. 92% of people who search for a product or service on a mobile device make a purchase within a day. In addition, mobile squeeze pages work even more effectively because they are typically presented without other distracting links or buttons to click on, that you might see in a desktop version. If a phone number is presented on the squeeze page (recommended) the user can just hit the link to make a direct call to your office…
- Think Outside the Smartphone: While mobile media consumption has increased dramatically over the past several years, the device screen size can vary between manufacturers and types of devices (Smartphones, Tablets, Touch Screen Kiosks, Etc.). Attempting to design to specific screen sizes is next to impossible so presenting your website in a responsive format insures your company’s brand and information are being delivered appropriately.
- Stronger Social Strategy: It has been estimated that 60% of time spent on a mobile device is on social media… so if your company is doing a good job of engaging your clients and prospects on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. when they hit the link to your website to take the next step, how effective do you think it will be if they see a non-mobile, tiny version of your website. Complete the process by having a responsive squeeze page to convert that social visitor to a qualified lead for your sales team!
- Stay ahead of the competition: While there are many businesses and organizations that have made the transition to a responsive format, the majority, especially small and medium sized businesses, have not addressed it… (44% of Fortune 500 companies are not mobile-ready). Get ahead of your competition by being “responsive” to your prospects!