The benefits of a responsive website design (RWD) are huge when looking at marketing your business online. With 4 out of 5 consumers shopping on smartphones worldwide, being able to cater for multiple platforms and target mobile users specifically is really important especially if your company uses SEO as a key aspect of your digital marketing strategy.
Having a website that is mobile friendly is an essential in a world where such a large percentage of users access the internet through mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones.
As companies that rely on their online presence as much as they do their physical one, making your website adhere to Google’s rules is rather important. The world’s largest search engine understands that as well as making it an easier and more enjoyable experience for users, responsive website design also means that all content is accessible via a single URL. This means that no difference is made to your page rank and enables you to build a stronger backlink profile for both desktop and mobile searches.
Regardless of device, responsive design websites share the same HTML which makes easier and more efficient for Google to crawl, index and organise its content. From an SEO perspective these sites are more likely favoured by mobile-optimisation making them more likely to be presented as results for searches made on mobile devices.
Even if your website is doing well in terms of placement on search engine results, if it doesn’t work as well – or at all – for smartphone or tablet users then bounce rate will be a big problem. Separate mobile sites may seem like a good idea but if the content is too stripped down or dissimilar from that offered on the original desktop site Google will drop its ratings. If users are closing your site after a few seconds or not clicking through to any other pages your bounce rate will rise, followed by Google dropping your rankings for key search terms.
Optimising user experience is a key element of digital marketing and this envelops the overall appearance and practicality of your company’s website. E-commerce sites have seen massive increases in profit due to the mobile device revolution with 69% of shoppers using a tablet to complete their purchases. According to a survey taken in early 2014, 16% of smartphone and tablet users are said to ‘give up’ with a website if the page loads too slowly. This frustration leads to lack of customer satisfaction and, ultimately, lack of revenue for companies.
Responsive website design is great for enhancing your user’s experiences. With only one site to maintain there is no duplicate or irrelevant content to deal with and everything is conveniently accessible. Reduction of page load speed also prevents frustrated customers.
Having a separate site for your mobile users can often require separate SEO and PPC (pay per click) campaigns. By incorporating responsive website design you are able to focus solely on the one website and its SEO needs.
There are, however, benefits to having a mobile-specific SEO strategy. Being able to optimise for keywords that are more likely to be searched when someone is on their smartphone will optimise your strategy for these users. Although this can be great, it is not essential and there is no reason why mobile-specific keywords can’t be incorporated into the responsive design site strategy.
As more and more consumers turn to mobile shopping and browsing it is imperative that businesses adapt to their needs. With responsive website design you are able to optimise your search engine placement and rankings as well as ensure that your customers get the most out of what you have to offer.