Why Should My Website be Responsive?
“Do you make responsive websites?” That was THE question as I started my Web Design business. My response? Absolutely. If it was at a networking event and there were 3 other people, at least two them would ask, “What’s responsive?”
What is a responsive website anyways?
Let’s do a quick history lesson. I’m sure just about everyone knows what a mobile website is, right? A mobile website is an annoying website that popped up on your phone and automatically put the m. before the address. i.e. m.website.com. A lot of websites you could not do everything you could do on the main website as well. They just cut it out. It sucked. Also, it looked like crap.
In short, a responsive website takes the website that is on your desktop or laptop, and automatically shifts things around to make it look great on any device no matter the width.
Benefits of a Responsive Website
There are quite a few benefits for having a responsive website. It is the industry standard, and it matters for your businesses performance. These are my 3 favorite aspects to responsive web design.
1. Google Rank
Responsive websites affect SEO. Yes, Google’s ranking algorithm will drop you if you do not have a responsive website. This is specifically what I was referring to by saying it matters for your businesses performance.
2. Brand Consistency
A website should be a great showcase for your brand. If it’s not, you/your business is starting off on the wrong foot. Your branding (logo) should be consistent on all the masks of your business, whether it be a website, poster, sign, or proposal.
The best part about a responsive website is it takes your desktop website and just makes it look good on mobile as well. This is key for us marketing gurus who want to take your company to the next level. Using a responsive site is similar no matter what platform you’re on, however each one works great based on the device.
Creating a responsive website isn’t as easy as plugging a line of code on your website and ending it. It can be easy if you choose the right WordPress theme, but there should still be customization involved for it to really click.
Responsive templates take all the columns and move them to one single column if you’re on your phone. However, this creates an information overload on many websites. What a good responsive designer will do is change the text size based on the device and choose what is necessary for the website to exist.
Another aspect many inexperienced designers make is the order of content when a website goes from desktop to mobile. Never put secondary information at the top on a mobile device, i.e. a sidebar. Make sure you disable sections on mobile if they don’t fit there and add them in further down the page, but make sure that is disabled on the desktop.
How Does it Work?
It more or less makes decisions based on screen width. That means if a website is truly responsive you can take a website on your desktop, and make the browser thin and see the changes happen instantly as you shrink it down. If you’re not happy with how it looks, then there is some work that needs to be done on your responsive website.
Cost For Responsive Website
There is no one size fits all price for web design, right? Each project is different based on the number of pages, content, functionality, etc. I read somewhere that an agency quoted someone to create a website for $4000 which is a fair price in today’s day and age. Then the client asked if it would be responsive, and the agency said if they wanted it responsive it would be $13,000. WHAT?!
Every website I create is responsive, and every website any credible designer creates will be responsive. Their prices should NOT have gone up because websites should be responsive now. You don’t up your prices just because the industry changed. Essentially, what I’m saying is take the quote, but make sure all the websites that designer creates are responsive (and have been for a couple years).
Responsive websites have transformed how we interact with websites on our mobile device and what we can accomplish. Soon computers will be near extinct (except for power users) and everything is headed towards a mobile era. Phones are personable, convenient, and more powerful than ever.
A responsive website is essential to a businesses success if they want to attain clients from the Internet. If you don’t move with technology you will be left behind.