Gone are the days when people could only access the internet through desktop computers – as we all know, more and more people use mobile devices such smart phones and tablets to go online. In fact, some have already made the switch and ditched the desktop computers already, since they can in fact perform virtually any task through their mobile devices. Or can they?
Although there is an app for everything, people are still sticking to normal browsing for at least certain actions – would you download the local plumber’s app just to check his address or phone numbers? Or maybe somebody was reading some news in the office and then wanted to continue while commuting – wouldn’t you just prefer to read it in browser?
Having a functional responsive design is important for all websites, and even more so for online stores, since your customers are not only accessing information, but also performing actions and spending money for your products: responsive design is what you customers need and expect.
Unfortunately, many companies have yet to make the switch to responsive design. In fact, you may be surprised (or annoyed) to find out that some incredibly popular websites still do not offer responsive design.
So why should an Online store have responsive design? Here are our top 5 picks
1) Make it easy to use
Being able to browse an online store without hassle should be the most important rule for all online stores – would you go to shop at a supermarket where you are required to climb a rope and do a front flip just to enter? Your customers shouldn’t even notice they landed on a responsive design website – in fact, they should just have the same experience they get when browsing a desktop website.
2) 24/7 experience
For better or worse, we are always online – not only for work, but for pleasure and shopping too. The beauty of eCommerce is that your store never really closes and people can browse and purchase products during hours when most of the business are not open. Furthermore, they can access your store wherever they are and with any device – be it a laptop, a phone, or a tablet. Customers may check your store at work, compare products while commuting on a mobile and then decide to finalise their purchase at home on a tablet – with a responsive design, you make sure that people can always access you store no matter when or how.
3) Please the switchers
The use of mobile devices to access the internet has increased by 67% worldwide in 2014, in fact overtaking desktop in several countries including India, South Africa and Saudi Arabia. In China, the percentage of users accessing the Internet via mobile grew to 83.4%,surpassing for the first time the percentage of users who access the internet via PCs (80.9 percent). More and more people, while using desktop computers at work, prefer to only own a tablet or a mobile phone for their online needs. Being able to reach this niche is crucial for an eCommerce business, even more so in China where mobile transactions are becoming the norm.
4) Too many devices
4 inches, 5 inches, 5.1 inches, phablets, mini and giant tablets – mobile producers have created phones and tablets in almost any size possible, so many that it is almost impossible to keep up – by having a responsive design, you make sure that your website will be easy to browse, no matter the device your customers are using.
Last but not least, even Google is promoting the use of responsive websites: they recommend webmasters to implement this practice and said publicly that they would prefer all sites be responsive.