What is a responsive website?

Responsive Web Design (RWD) is an approach to website design aimed at allowing desktop web pages to be viewed in response to the size of the device (smartphone or tablet) one is viewing with.

A website using a responsive design uses flexible layouts, flexible images, and cascading style sheet media queries. Responsive design aims to build web pages that detect the visitor’s screen size and orientation and change the layout accordingly.

How does a responsive website work?

View this article on a desktop or laptop browser to see a responsive website in action and manually minimize the browser width to make it thinner. You should see the layout adjust itself to fit the new width of the browser. You will see a change in the web page menu, pictures, and content. This will let you know if a website is responsive or not. Try this test on another website or your website. If the page does not adjust to fit the smaller/thinner browser width and you have to scroll to view the entire page, the website design is not responsive.

You can also use the website Am I Responsive to check website responsiveness. Enter your URL in the input field and click Go. This will render your site on multiple devices to check the responsiveness.

Why should you want a responsive website?

Mobile usage has exploded

Mobile internet usage surpasses desktop usage for the first time in history; in 2016, more users acc) than they did from desktops or notebooks. According to data released by StatCounter, 51.3% of all web visits in October 2016 came from mobile devices, compared to 48.7% of visits from traditional computing platforms.

As of 2024, 60.67% of website traffic comes from mobile devices. Consistently hovering around the 50 percent mark since 2017.

If your site is not optimized for mobile devices, it may impact how Google ranks your website. Not sure if your site is mobile responsive? Run it through Google’s free test. If your site is not mobile-friendly, it’s time to update to a new theme. Reach out to me and we can discuss how to update your website to be mobile-responsive.

A positive user experience is a must

If a user lands on your mobile website and doesn’t see what they are looking for, there’s a 61% chance they will leave and go to another website, most likely a competitor. Conversely, if they have a positive experience with your mobile responsive website, a user is 67% more likely to buy a product or use a service.

Social media activities bring mobile visitors

If you use social media for your business, you’re probably seeing an increase in mobile traffic. A recent study by ComScore cites that 55% of social media consumption happens on a mobile device. Therefore, ensuring your website is mobile-responsive and user-friendly is a good business practice.

Responsive design is preferred for SEO

Google prefers responsive web design over mobile templates. Having one URL makes it easier for Google bots to crawl your site and reduces the chance of on-page SEO errors. Responsive sites perform better and are easier to maintain than a separate mobile template site.

A speedy, responsive website is vital

A responsive website will not slow down when loading a desktop website on a mobile device. When a user has to wait too long for a page to load, there’s a high chance they will leave your site and not return.

Responsive adapts to future devices

The benefit of a responsive design is that the template size is based on screen size, not the device. That means no matter what size screen someone is viewing your website, it will display correctly for that screen size.

Do you need a responsive website design?

If so, contact me, and let me help you transition from an unresponsive website to a new responsive one that adds value to your business and marketing efforts.


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