When well over a half of your potential audience/ target market is browsing the internet with portable, hand-held devices (read: smartphones and tablets), it’s paramount that your site’s front end (and consequently, content) adapts fluidly across every device dimension known and yet to be. This is the first and foremost reason why ‘Responsive’ design is the start of making your website capable of withstanding tests of time.
WordPress site owners are and have been quite lucky in this department for many years now: Responsive themes are WordPress theme repository submission standard and every premium theme you see will be responsive 99 times out of 100.
And yet, if you need convincing to switch to a responsive theme (for yourself or your client), here are 4 significant reasons, outlined succinctly as possible:
• Prioritizing Content
Since the design and interface elements are not going to remain ‘fixed’, it’s pointless to add too much frills and bows to them. The first priority becomes legibility of content across all device dimensions. And that is a great thing.
Mobile-first (progressive enhancement) and content-first design paradigms have a stronger foothold than any other practice in WordPress theme design. This helps designers sort the necessary from the ‘tacky accessory’ – helping them create remarkable interface designs with minimum, but superbly created elements.
User Experience, aka UX, in this day and age needs consideration if you hope to achieve good search ranks/ leads and conversions/ traffic and reputation. Even though it’s mostly a feeling, you can see the consequences in measurable conversion rates and SERP rankings.
And a lot of it depends on how responsive your website is.
Put yourself in your mobile device-using visitors’ shoes – Imagine how absolutely annoyed you would be at a website if you have to scroll in all directions just to read two lines or view an entire image. Recall your own bubbling rage when you find that the links can’t be clicked on a website because they are too small for your sausage fingers. Or imagine how you’d want to throw your phone at the nearest wall after waiting for ages. And once it does load, it’s full of buffering, auto playing videos and similar junk.
It’s the cumulative effect of little missed details that create bad mobile UX and can drive away over a half of your target audience. A responsive theme counters all of this with performance, beautifully adaptable interactions, and mobile-specific elements.
• SEO advantages
All major search engines – Google, Bing!, Yahoo, etc. have made it known time and again that for searches done through mobile, responsive sites will rank significantly higher than fixed-width websites. Essentially, that same target market of yours that’s using mobile phones to look information about your service type will see responsive website results way before they see yours. You’re practically giving your competitors an edge over you by not being responsive.
Future ready designs are responsive by definition. If you have grand plans for your business WordPress website, you’ll go for a responsive theme from the start, and you’ll be lucky since almost every WordPress theme today is responsive. But if you are stuck with a design you love but one that’s not responsive, simply look up a WordPress web development company to make the necessary changes for you.
On WordPress, you have an answer to every problem.