More and more people are using mobile devices these days, whether smartphones, tablets or a combination of these. With more people accessing the web on the go, or from the comfort of their sofas, you’ll want to make sure that your own website is easily accessible on these devices. There are a couple of ways you can improve how your brand comes across to your mobile visitors; and you’ll want to do this because it can help to increase conversions in terms of journeys through the website and eventually sales. So what are your options?
Responsive web design or a mobile website?
Firstly you should look at your website – is yours currently designed for mobile devices? Some websites are solely mobile websites, and their URLs might include an “m” or “mobile”. For example: ‘mobile.brand.com’. This means that the website will likely be a stripped down version of the main website and will include a simpler navigation that doesn’t distract the user from other features. This can be an ideal place to start if your desktop version website is still up to date and functional, but there is another option…
Responsive websites are different to specific mobile websites as they work on all devices. Basically, a responsive website scales to fit each device, whether it’s an iPhone or a Samsung Galaxy Tab tablet. This means that the URL remains the same regardless of what device you are using, which ultimately means that you will only need to maintain one website going forwards. The way these sites work is by using breaking points which tells the code to show the website with reorganized features. The content is easier to read as it is made with your mobile device in mind.
There are positives to using both mobile website techniques, but a responsive website can be more future proof. It also allows you to have just one website, and as such, just one SEO strategy. Having a separate mobile website can mean having to run two concurrent SEO strategies which can lead to confusion to incoming links to your website.
The next thing to consider is whether your brand could be well represented on a mobile app. web app development has grown in the past couple of years as brands have discovered how they can provide entertainment, education and information to mobile users when they’re on the go. Examples of this are salary calculator apps by job search websites, or mobile banking apps by the large UK banks. Your brand may well be smaller than this but there may still be a cool tool or game you can come up with. A good mobile app may well be featured in the App Store or Google Play, so make sure you get it done properly.
About the author
George Barnsworth is involved in web app development in London, UK. He loves to keep up to date with the latest mobile trends and owns a number of devices including a Galaxy S3, iPad and a Blackberry.