One of the first things I do when I am asked to consult on digital marketing for SME’s is to check out whether they have a responsive website or not. In 8 out of 10 cases, the website is usually mobile friendly but not responsive. I then show them how the lack of having a responsive website ends up with them losing customers to their competition that they could have easily got.
But before I get into why this happens, let’s spend a few minutes quickly understanding that a responsive website is and how it’s different from being mobile friendly. And then of course! We will check out how a responsive website can beat your competition.
Responsive websites are websites that scale itself depending on the device through which you are accessing the website.
What this in effect provides is for a great user experience for the visitor to your website no matter what the size of the display screen he is using. The website content scales itself according to the device size automatically and shows the site to him in the best format. This is how a responsive website can beat your competition.
Mobile friendly is actually a misnomer because sites that you can access on your mobile if they are not responsive are really not friendly. Take a look at this site and see both the desktop and how it appears on the mobile.
Here is how it looks on a desktop:
Now the same site when I view it on my mobile appears like this!
Notice how half the content of the site is lost when one views it from a mobile device. On a mobile device, the natural tendency is to scroll up and down and not left to right to view things. However, when you are not having a responsive website, the scroll also becomes a left to right scroll. One has to pinch and expand the screen to read what is on the site. One would need to expand the image to even enter the email id. With this, it is impossible to think off, his responsive website can beat your competitors.
All of which makes the user extremely uncomfortable and the likelihood of the visitor deciding to visit the competition becomes higher.
Conclusion – A responsive website = happier user experience and a non-responsive website or what some people call mobile friendly = an unhappy visitor
Now imagine if the same visitor had visited the competition website and gotten to see this!
Which business do you think would have a larger number of conversions from the visits? Definitely, a responsive one beating your competition.
Having a responsive website help businesses in several ways:
- You are able to provide a much better user experience to your website visitor and able to tell your sales story to him/her in a much better fashion
- Having a responsive website also helps in improving the SEO for the website. Google’s algorithm punishes those websites that are not mobile responsive.
- Since your website is mobile optimized, you are able to reach out and influence the large percentage of users today who access websites from their mobile devices.
- Lastly, if you’re a Small business or an SME and you realize that your competition is weak on a particular point- what do you do? You be the first to make a responsive website and take away all the visitors that would have gone to him!
Here’s how that will happen, with just one example – Google Search and you will clearly come to know how a responsive website can beat your competition better.
Google Search is where people go to search for information. Taking the same two companies, this is the search volume that comes for the keyword “CA Coaching”. You can find this out by using the Google Keyword Planner Tool. This handy guide to using the AdWords Keyword Tool will give you all the help in using this tool
That’s approximately about 800 searches only for this keyword where both companies are competing on page 1. Therefore any new visitor coming and searching for CA Coaching would essentially get to see both businesses and have an option of visiting either or both. Assuming he visits both, the chances of him dropping out of the first one within a few seconds is extremely high and hence the one with the better responsive website will gain that customer. That’s why it is important to have a responsive website that can beat your competition.
Think of it as having two shops side by side, one with a nice exciting window display and the other with nothing and a shutter that is half down. You don’t need to be a nuclear scientist to know who is going to get more customers from the traffic that flows past both the stores!
As a business owner, you can easily check to see if your website matches up to being a responsive website or not. Responsive website is a plus point if you want to boost brand via online marketing.
Google has a free testing tool that is simple to use. If you want to see how your website appears on different devices, there’s my favorite Responsive Design Checker . Use either of these tools to check out your and your competitor’s website and analyze whether your website is responsive enough to beat your competition.