Expert Views on the Future of Responsive Web Design

I recently wrote a post on the future of responsive web design and the impact it will have on the profession. I thought it might be good to share some thoughts of a few experts on the topic. Here are a few things that you should bear in mind as you consider the benefits this new technology offers.

How will responsive design change the web?

Responsive websites will change the web.

Powerful SEO Benefits

Hayley Francis recently created an awesome piece on Search Engine Journal about the impact responsive design has on SEO. As I stated earlier, companies that don’t use responsive design may see their rankings fall drastically in the near future. Francis has shared a few insights that you will want to consider:

  • You can focus on building links to a single website, rather than building separate links to the mobile and desktop versions of a site.
  • Responsive websites have been shown to have lower bounce rates, which is a factor that Google has been evaluating since Panda went into effect.
  • Having a single url can help reduce the likelihood that you will face duplicate content issues or splitting your pagerank.

Matt Cutts recently confirmed that responsive web design is the best option for SEO. You can find his recent statement on YouTube. The bottom line from his recent post is that responsive web design is better, because many website owners don’t create mobile versions of their site properly. Designers can focus on creating a single site, rather than creating separate versions for mobile and desktop devices.

Streamline the Design Process

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Designing sites for different devices is too inefficient

Responsive design also drastically reduces the amount of time needed to spend creating new websites. Tim Kadlec will be speaking at the Responsive Design Summit next week. One of the topics that he will be addressing if the way that responsive design can streamline the process. He said that the responsive design process is much quicker than creating separate versions of every website that you are using.

Enhance the User Experience

Responsive websites enhance the user experience.

Responsive websites create a better user experience.

Tom Shivers recently shared another great overview on the benefits of responsive design for everyone involved. He discussed the benefits to Google and web developers, but the real benefit that he highlighted was for the end user. Shivers said that a poor mobile platform is going to upset users. He referenced a study that shows nearly two thirds of users won’t recommend a company with a poor mobile website. Companies with responsive websites will have much happier users, which means that they will have higher conversion and customer satisfaction.

Many Companies Still Lagging With Responsive Design

Nine out of ten online retailers still haven't created responsive sites.

Nine out of ten online retailers still haven’t created responsive sites.

Despite the benefits of responsive design, most companies still haven’t gotten on the bandwagon yet. A recent survey from The Search Agency found that only 9% of the leading online retailers have created responsive websites. Sites that sold to a female audience were more likely to use responsive sites than other ecommerce sites.

More companies are starting to realize the benefits of responsive design and will probably implement it in the near future. However, responsive websites still represent the minority of the sites out there.

Mobile and desktop only websites may be obsolete in the near future.

Mobile and desktop only websites may be obsolete in the near future.

Flickr resources:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/adactio/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/chasingdaisy/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sidesh0w/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/simonowendesign/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/luc/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/placenamehere/

About the Author: Kalen Smith

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