June, 2015 · By Deborah Fiorentino
So, you’ve spent several weeks perfecting your business site for its primetime debut—from the well-written copy to the beautiful design, your site is destined for great things. Or is it? Is your website mobile friendly? Preparing a website for mobile visitors often ranks near the bottom of the priority list for small business owners, but overlooking this key element could prove devastating to your marketing endeavors.
Not only will a lackluster mobile site cause you to miss out on substantial traffic, but it could also cause Google to penalize you. Before you make a crucial mistake, consider the far-reaching impact of mobile design.
Catering to the Masses
Up until a few short years ago, mobile web browsing still represented a relatively minor portion of overall Internet traffic. Today, however, millions of smartphone and tablet users rely on their devices for access on the go. In fact, nearly half of all Google searches now originate from mobile devices.
Perhaps even more importantly, research shows modern consumers are using their phones on the move to find restaurants and small businesses to patronize. In fact, a whopping 64% of restaurant searchers convert within an hour. This figure represents substantial growth opportunities for small brands.
Employing Responsive Design
With users accessing the web on a myriad of digital devices, each with a different screen size and resolution, how can you provide an optimal experience to every page visitor? Webmasters of yesteryear used to build a separate mobile site to serve as a standalone alternative to a full desktop site, but this isn’t ideal for SEO purposes.
Enter responsive design. This innovative technique allows modern websites to effectively resize themselves based on the dimensions of each unique visitor’s screen. From would-be customers on their home desktop to smartphone users browsing with their thumbs, a responsive site looks great on every device.
Considering the Google Equation
Google long ago sprinted to dominance as the most popular search engine in the world, and today the search behemoth’s actions can be directly felt by nearly every domain on the Internet. In April of this year, Google changed its search algorithm to prioritize sites with responsive design over other web destinations. Nicknamed mobilegeddon by the media, this change, sent webmasters scrambling to ensure their sites could compete with early adopters of responsive design.
If your site isn’t already using a responsive theme, it’s important to rectify this as quickly as possible. Small businesses are often slower to adopt changes of this nature, but failing to make the switch could cause you to lose significant ranking.
From catering to buyers searching for local options to keeping the search engines happy, responsive web design offers an assortment of appealing benefits. Investing in responsive design is a smart long-term strategy for your business, as it keeps you competitive and helps ensure you won’t lose out on potential conversions. If you haven’t yet made the change, make your move quickly to keep your business healthy in the digital age.