The use of mobile devices continues to rise rapidly. As of January 2017, 77 percent of Americans owned smartphones and 50 percent owned tablets. Perhaps even more importantly, in 2016, the percentage of online searches that occurred through mobile devices (51.3%) exceeded the percentage of online searches that occurred through desktop computers (48.7%). These shifts in how people access the Internet require shifts in how organizations go about their web design. Custom web design and development need to prioritize, not just accommodate, the needs of people using their mobile devices. Mobile web design is the solution. This approach to web design creates a site that can recognize and respond to the type of device being used to access it. By doing so, it allows visitors to quickly locate the information they need regardless of the device they are using. Here are just a few reasons that mobile web design is essential for most websites today, and a few tools to help you identify the mobile-friendliness of your site.
Google Prioritizes Mobile Friendly websites
In April of 2015, Google announced that it was going to start taking mobile-friendly web design into account when ranking websites in the search results. This approach alone was enough to motivate many businesses to adopt a mobile web design. However, in November of 2016, Google went a step further when it announced that it was going to primarily use a website’s mobile version to rank its web pages. Mobile web design has now become a priority in Google’s indexing and ranking efforts. Websites that do not incorporate mobile-friendliness into their web pages and web applications will suffer in the search results. They can expect their rankings to continue deteriorating as Google increasingly emphasizes mobile-friendliness.
As a result, mobile web design should be a priority for websites serious about improving their performance in the search results. In fact, mobile friendliness should be one of the first elements websites adopt as part of a successful search engine optimization campaign.