Responsive web design is one of the latest web design trends in 2013, and for good reason. A responsive design provides a single, unified web design that works for smartphones, tablets, and desktop browsers. Instead of running the risk of duplicate content penalties and other issues that come from having separate designs for each device accessing your website, simplify matters (and resources!) with a single design that adapts to the device viewing it. Keynote recently reported that 46 percent of mobile users couldn’t properly access a web page, meaning that site owners without responsive designs are running the risk of losing business and regular visitors.
1. Cutting Down Development Costs
It’s simple math—one well-implemented, effective design generally costs less than three or four separate designs. Use the web development costs that normally would have been allocated to multiple versions of the site, towards marketing, additional feature development, or other essential website functions.
When you design a responsive site, you’re doing more than simply benefiting your customers on your ecommerce site. You are also creating a site that can be managed from any device. You can set up new products, use invoicing tools, and perform other site management functions from any desktop, smartphone or tablet.
3. Improving Conversions
When Hubspot switched over to a responsive web design, they found that their conversion rate increased to 5.6 percent, doubling their original conversion ratio. Part of the reason for this is that the first impression of their website worked properly for mobile and desktop users, and also retained a unified look regardless of the device on which it was viewed. A responsive design allows you to build more brand recognition and authority with consistent imagery, content, and navigation options for your users.
4. Increasing Mobile Traffic Trends
Another benefit of responsive web design is future-proofing. Forbes recently reported that mobile web traffic continues to increase, accounting for approximately 40 percent of their website traffic. This number is expected to increase as smartphone penetration rises and tablets become more popular as laptop alternatives. As smartphones and tablets increase in technological capabilities, expect that they will soon replace PCs and laptops for many basic computing functions, such as web browsing, ecommerce, and email.
5. Adjusting Navigation to Benefit the Device
Responsive web design allows you to decide exactly where your content and navigation is going to go on various devices, so you can personalize the experience for each set of devices. The website version is determined by the device, instead of the server, so it accurately delivers the proper experience to the user.
6. Simplified Stats
can be difficult to parse and analyze meaningful data when taking into consideration all the different device types. A responsive design, however, delivers one URL to view overall trends, while still allowing access to device-specific stats.
Having a website professionally designed is not as easy or as fast as some might think. Quickly and unplanned website often result in failure. The steps to developing a new website can also be a little overwhelming at first, however our goal is to make this process as painless as possible. If you want to do this the right way, there are several steps, questions and decisions that need to be answered and you need to be ready for this.
Goals & Target.
What is the main purpose of this website? Who do you want to reach? Who is your target market? Who else is doing something similar?
Name & domain.
Do you have a business name already? Is this name something that will get people’s attention? Is it a clear name? Does it reflect your business and what you do? Remember that a business name will stick with you forever. This is probably one of the most important business decisions you will ever make.
When selecting a domain name we always recommend:
– a name that is easy to understand when told to someone else. Practice: say the name out loud. If you need to repeat it more than once, if you need to correct the spelling of it; then you might need to reconsider.
– a not too long name. Once again, you want people to remember the name. Decide for: www.pinkstudios.net rather than www.pinkstudioswebdesignandbrandingagencyforeventplanners.com. Ok, that was too long but you get the point! 😉
Domain names are paid yearly and usually cost about $15. However, premium domain will have higher prices. The most popular domain registrar (and our favorite as well) is GoDaddy.com. It is inexpensive and easy to register and manage.
After you have decided and registered your domain name, you’ll need to find a hosting service. A hosting service is what allows your website to be available on the Internet. In simple, is where your web files will be stored and then pushed to your visitor’s web browser.
Once you have covered these first steps.. we’re now ready to get into the fun part: planning & design!
Premade vs. Custom.
At this point, you’ll decide whether you wish to have a custom website built or choose a premade template for your website. There are pros and cons between these:
– Custom designs are made specially for you. You’ll be able to provide your input throughout the whole design process, making this design exactly what you were looking for.
– When you choose a premade template, you’re purchasing a web template that was previously built and it is sold as is.
– Custom websites tend to be priced higher than premade templates, however you are guaranteed a unique design.
– Premade templates are priced considerably less than custom templates. Our premade templates are sold multiple times which allows us to maintain a low price on them. However, this means that someone else in the Internet could have the same web template as you will. Our guarantee to you is that we never compromise quality in our premade designs.
Website: the big picture.
At this point, you need to have a clear understanding of what you need your website to accomplish, the content that will be included in the website, design details, etc. When contacting your designer, the following questions must be answered – this will give the designer/developer a better understanding of your view for the project.
– Design Any design specifics you have in mind and that you’d like to give as input to your designer. (Color palettes, fonts, icons, background, patterns, photos, illustrations, logo, and so on.)
– Pages & navigation: How many pages will your website include? Which of these will be the included on the main navigation (i.e.: Home, About, Services, Gallery, Contact), Do you want a top horizontal navigation or a left vertical navigation?
– Content: Start drafting the content to be included. For this, proper email communication is key. Create individual documents with proper title and content for each page. A great practice for this is to create separate folders where each folder is a navigation tab. There, include all the images to be included, document with content, and any other details. Also, include a brief description for each page.
However, if you find the creation of all your website’s content to be overwhelming, you can consider hiring a Public Relations agency / Copywriter to create all your website content.
(For more on proper email communication read our article: The science of proper emailing. 10 Do’s & don’ts when sending emails.)
– Blog: Will this website include a blog?
– Gallery: Will this website include a gallery?
– Contact: Will this website include a custom contact form? Which fields will the form have? To which email address should the inquiries be sent to?
– Functionality: Are there any specific funcionalities that you know your website must have? Home slideshow? Downloadable content? SEO Optimization? E-commerce cart? Paypal transactions? Google Analytics setup?
Ready, Set, Go!
At this point, your website should be ready to go live. The most important aspect to a successful website is quality of content and promotion. Promote, promote, promote. People will never know about you unless you get the word out. Why should they visit your site? What do you offer that interests them? How are you going to keep them entertained? Do you have a plan? Don’t forget to add your web address into every promotional item you give out: business cards, flyers, email signature, social media, etc.
Do you have any questions? Need info regarding how to promote your business online and get the best rankings, drop us an email.
Often, people think that having a website is more of a luxury than a necessity. Below, i explain the reasons why i believe it is a necessity.
- Accessible 24/7 – Websites can be accessed 24 hours/day, 7 days/week. At those late night hours when you are sleeping and/or unable to assist your visitors, your website will definitely be there for them.
- Convenience and Exposure – Your visitors will be able to search your website from wherever they want. For some clients, searching through your website or online store is easier than actually visiting your location. The internet can expose your website to a whole new market and demographic. Why just promote your business through YellowPages, or the local newspaper or even Penny Saver (which are all targeted to your area) instead of promoting your business through a website on the Internet? By having a website, Google can act as your “Yellow Pages”, and anyone looking for you, your business, services or products will be able to find you.
- Faster Communication – Communicating a message to your clients its easier than ever! What do you do when you have a sale going on? You spend time and money creating banners and in-store advertisements to let your clients know. However, what about those clients that like 50+ miles away from you and that have only visited your store when they are around? They will miss this event… Well, if you have a website you can post your big sales online and let every single person that access your website know about them. How about if you change your business hours? … or even if you are moving locations! Having a website definitely build a stronger communication between your business (whatever it is) and your clients.
- Saves Money – Most people look at websites as a big or unnecessary investment. Well, if I have not convinced you yet of how necessary and important a website is. How about if i told you that; yes at the beginning there is an initial investment but afterwards you and your business will actually be saving money? Like mentioned on our “reason #3”, when you have to communicate with your clients you either send out flyers,
brochures, catalogs, letters… which also means, spending money on supplies and postage. If you have a website you can post all of these on it. How does that sound?
- Measurable Results – A website allows you to track visitors, location, which links they are clicking on your website and even how long they are staying on each page. Isn’t that nice? Now, with all that information you can create new goals and improve the ones that need to be improved.
If you feel like I missed something or would like to know more information, feel free to leave a comment or email.