So far in the series we’ve covered some compelling mobile web statistics supporting the need to have a mobile optimised or responsive website, and if that wasn’t enough to get you across the line then it was followed up with the 4 strong reasons of:
- Customer expectation
- Remaining competitive
- SERP (Search Engine Results Page) visibility and performance
- User experience
What are your Mobile Optimisation Options?
There are 2 main approaches to website development for a mobile audience, are either an Adaptive or Responsive approach.
An Adaptive approach is where the website layout and template base is different for each targeted device. In essence you have 2 distinct websites 1 targeting mobile users and 1 targeting desktop users.
While this enables you to optimise content and delivery to the respective users it comes at the price of increasing management overhead with duplicated pages and content.
A typical approach to creating an adaptive mobile website is to set up the new website under an “m” sub-domain and redirect mobile users to this when they access the main website.
The more favoured approach to mobile optimisation from Google and developers alike is to have a responsive design approach to your websites development. This in essence means you have a single set of layouts that respond to the different devices by moving, hiding and displaying page content appropriate to that device.
The benefits of using a responsive approach include:
- Google recommends it
- Management of website content is reduced
- Minimises possible SEO problems like duplicate content
- It’s cost effective
If you’re looking to get a new or upgraded website then a responsive approach is the way to go.
For those of you who already have a significant investment in a web presence then an adaptive site may be an option, however a responsive approach may prove to be a more economic option in the long run and remember Google recommends it.
Further reading in the “Mobile Optimised Website” Series.
Part 1 – The numbers don’t lie
Part 2 – 4 reasons why you should have one
Part 3 – Technology options and delivery
Part 4 – Features, focus and things you should consider