The way your customers access the internet is constantly changing, 10 – 15 years ago, most people used a dial up connection to access the internet, websites were mainly text and design to only be viewed on a desktop PC. 5 – 10 years ago it technology changed to broadband, and with the higher download speed, websites started to add more graphics and videos. Today, mobile is the fastest growing way to access the internet and due to this websites are again having to change so they can be fully utilised by these different devices. In fact there are many surveys showing that a growing number of users are now using mobile devices as their primary device and this shift is likely to only increase over the next few years thanks to 4G. It’s not just that people are changing from desktops to mobile devices but they are changing the way they search as well. With Local Searches this number is even greater especially for local services that people need when they are out and about. This means that, if your website design is not Responsive and not fully optimised for the mobile user, you could be missing out on up to 20% of your potential customers already, just imagine how many sales and inquiries that could be by this time next year.
This is why it is so crucial that the website design or WordPress theme you choose is a responsive, mobile ready one and that you are happy with the way it looks and works on as many different mobile devices as you can test it on (See our page on Mobile Emulator testing). Users will no longer put up with having to take additional steps in order to use your site on different devices or be happy with missing out on additional functionality because your images and widgets don’t re-size correctly.
How to build A Responsive Website
Well this is dependent on the platform you have chosen for your website build, while I have a reluctance to recommend website builder platforms like Weebly and Godaddy for the reasons I have already gone into in previous articles, they do handle mobile and tablet users reasonably well and take all the work and worry off the website owners shoulders, but if you have been following my advice up to now, then you have hopefully you have chosen WordPress and are ready to install it, so it can take a shiny new responsive theme.
Mobile and Tablet Ready?
We are often asked, “Is it possible to convert my existing website so that it is responsive?” well that depends on what your system your website has been built in. If it’s already using WordPress then you do have some options. Firstly you can look for a new website theme. WordPress themes control the look and feel of your website and will manage the responsive elements need to make it look great on any device. Changing your theme to a responsive, mobile ready theme is fairly simple and there are a lot of industry specific themes, such as Taxi companies, landscape designer and Dentists to choose from. Just visit Template Monster and browse from one of the largest selections of WordPress responsive themes from as little as £50. It’s, then just a matter of uploading it and placing your content in to your new style site. Another popular option for WordPress is Elegant Themes, they offer an amazing Drag & Drop theme call DIVI 2. This simple website builder allows you to customise your theme without the need to learn any complicated coding and is full responsive. If you really want to keep your existing website and WordPress theme then they also offer a hand held plug-in will allow you to convert your existing theme seamlessly. You can get this WordPress plug-in along with all their other plug-ins and their full range of 87 WordPress themes from the Elegant themes website for only $89.
So once you’ve chosen the design that suits you, you can move on to installing it and getting it running.