Over the past few years mobile devices have become an increasingly popular way to access the World Wide Web. According to Business News Daily, in 2013 approximately 40 percent of all time spent online was spent using mobile devices. Online browsing rose from 451 billion minutes in 2010 to 890 billion minutes in 2013, with the numbers going up steadily every year since. When launching a web development project, this is important information to keep in mind. Especially when you consider that not all web design methods are what one could call “mobile-friendly.” Responsive website development is one such example. While responsive websites are very popular, you must question how well mobile devices are able to handle such sites. Furthermore, what can you do to ensure that your responsive web design remains mobile friendly if that is the route you decide to take?
The Issue with Responsive Web Development
As more companies are investing significant amounts of money into responsive web development, they are soon finding out that the sites they are launching do not perform up to par in terms of mobile performance. What is the reason for this poor mobile performance? It would appear that the culprits are the images and graphics that are utilized by the sites.
When a study of 155 responsive websites was conducted by Trilibis Mobile, image size seemed to affect approximately 70 percent of websites when those sites were being viewed on a mobile device. In fact, about four out of every five responsive websites experienced inferior page load times when those sites were being viewed on mobile devices. Furthermore, less than one-quarter of the sites loaded in less than four seconds on a mobile device. In fact, approximately one-third of said sites took between 8 to 48 seconds to load. Considering the fact that a consumer is likely to leave a site that takes more than 3 seconds to load, it becomes apparent that this issue is one that cannot be taken lightly during the development of a responsive website.
How to Ensure Your Web Development Remains Mobile Friendly
Considering all of the above-mentioned facts and statistics, it is readily apparent that you need your site to be mobile friendly if you hope to compete in today’s mobile environment. Fortunately that does not mean you have to avoid responsive web development altogether. What you must do is make sure that your developers focus on optimizing your site’s images, keeping mobile devices in mind when developing your site’s pages. By using proper image optimization tools and techniques a site’s page weight can be cut in half, drastically reducing site load times. This can turn a site that performs poorly on mobile devices into a site that loads effortlessly.
When hiring a web development professional to create your website, make sure the developer is experienced in creating sites that are suitable for both traditional computers and mobile devices. When you ask to see examples of past work, make sure that mobile sites are included in the examples you receive so you can check how long it takes for the pages of the sites to load on your phone or tablet. You want to be sure the developer you choose can make your site attractive to mobile users and desktop users alike. Then your site will be able to effectively compete in the ever-growing mobile Web.