One of the greatest challenges facing web development, in its current state, is capturing the largest audience from a multitude of devices. These devices range from your typical desktop down to smart watches. Ok, maybe not smart watches quite yet, but I can dream.
If you have a large budget, your best bet is to cover all the bases and develop from desktop to mobile by scaling the site in response to the user’s device. This is called Responsive Web Design (RWD). It’s the ultimate tool for providing the best user experience, but brings a plethora of design tweaks and many hours of testing. It can also cause multiple issues in old browsers. I’m looking at you, Internet Explorer.
If you choose this route, you have to consider who the website will focus on. Is your audience more mobile-centric and looking for media such as videos, photos, etc.? Are they more of a traditional business, where information, whitepapers and product information are the focus?
These questions really drive what you should be spending your money on. Granted, all sites should work on a mobile device in some fashion, especially Apple and Android. The question is, how well do you cater to these markets?
A great start is to find out what browsers and platforms people are using to access your site. If you have Google Analytics, you can see what they used to view the site. If traffic is not coming to you from mobile and you are on a tight budget, then maybe your audience is not going to care if they can have a responsive experience.
If your traffic is at least 30-35% traffic from mobile, you should really consider having at least a basic mobile presence that focuses on key areas of your site.
If the majority of your traffic is mobile, you should consider a mobile-first, responsive site or a native mobile app that is compatible with both Apple and Android.
With the rapid advancement in technology, the growing reliance on mobile websites and the ability to build something really special for clients, it’s certainly an exciting time to be a web developer. If you have any questions and are looking for some help with your website, contact EPIC Creative®. We love working out the nerdiness for you.