With mobile devices become increasingly integrated into our daily lives, it is safe to a assume that in most cases a mobile presence is going to be beneficial to your business. The real question is, which one is right for you? Contrary to popular belief, a fully responsive website is not always the best option.
The Big Difference
As it turns out, you don’t need a traditionally responsive site in order to have a mobile presence. The desktop and mobile websites can be entirely independent, yet still managed through a single CMS. If that doesn't sound exciting to you - well, let me put it this way: we ensure you won’t have to do any duplicate content entry between your desktop and mobile websites. Let's do the happy dance together.
Understand Your Users
Before you can make an educated decision on which mobile solution is right for you, you need to understand how your users are (or will) interact with your interface on a mobile device. An effective mobile website or application should be tailored to their needs, yet still allow them to visit the full-featured version at their leisure.
If your users are mostly viewing your website on-the-go and your primary goal is to have them contact you, you might consider a single page smartphone solution where the page focuses on getting leads. If your users will most often be using your website on a mobile device, then you might consider a fully responsive website implementation.
Over the last several years we have found that most of our clients need a single page or multi-page solution and not a fully responsive website.
This is a single page website that appears only on smartphone devices. It is a very low-cost solution and is ideal for presenting users with very limited and focused information.
A multi-page website that appears only on smartphone devices is ideal for presenting users with focused content that simply cannot fit on a single page (landing page + product listing and detail pages + blog articles, etc.) The cost of this solution will depend on the number of pages and the content that goes on those pages.
This solution can be done independently or in addition to the single and multi-page solutions described above. Sometimes we just need to do a little extra clean-up work to get the site running smoothly on a tablet. This solution does not include an optimization for smartphone devices and the cost will depend on the size and complexity of the website.
A fully responsive site means that we will ensure the entire website looks and works beautifully on as many devices as we can accurately test. All pages on the website will be tablet and smartphone friendly. This is by far the most expensive solution we offer and it is therefore very important for you to accurately determine if this is the right solution for your business.
Your website will still be accessible and usable on mobile devices even without one of these solutions, it just won’t be optimized. All of our solutions will link back to the full website from the mobile site and vice-versa so that we aren’t completely limiting users from the full-featured version of the site.
Why Not a Mobile App?
There are surprisingly few good reasons to build a native mobile application for iPhone or Android. Most of what can be done through a native application can also be done using modern web techniques. The top reasons to build a native application are if you have:
- The need to access and utilize the accelerometer of the device (mostly used for gaming).
- The need to access the camera or microphone.
- The need to store and access data on the device itself.
- The need to sync data across devices.
- The need to utilize push notifications (SMS alerts).
- A large budget
If you don’t need any of those things, we believe there is little sense in driving up the cost and extending the timeline. It is fair to say that in general people spend far more time on apps than on mobile websites, but the right solution will be evident after a close examination of your users. Every company has different users who have different needs and so we offer as many relevant solutions as possible.
Now go forth and examine your users and their top tasks to determine what solution will work best for your business needs. If you have any questions about our mobile solutions, fill out our contact form or give us a call at 585.475.1080.