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It’s obvious that mobile Internet usage is steadily increasing. In fact, mobile has taken over desktop traffic, from browsing social media sites to checking emails to online shopping. Your customers are no longer hunched over a computer at home when they make decisions on online purchasing—they are sitting on a bus on their way to work or queuing for a cappuccino at their favourite coffee shop. And if your website fails to load properly on their smartphones and tablets, they abandon their purchase. It’s that fast.

If you’re still refusing to accept this new reality, here’s a sobering fact: 52% of mobile users refuse to engage with companies or brands that fail to deliver a good mobile experience. That means that more than half of your target will leave your website if it is difficult to read and navigate on a mobile device. Can you really afford to lose this dominant segment?

The Rise of the ‘Mobile Majority’

By 2015, mobile marketing in the United States is expected to generate over $400 billion, which is at least $261 billion more than the 2012 figure. As a business with online presence, you are now selling to a new mobile majority—a growing group of consumers who want, like, and expect certain things from a mobile site:

• 78% want to be able to find what they are looking for in just one to two clicks
• 78% want an easy to use search bar
• 76% want mobile websites to fit their screens automatically
• 74% expect to be given the choice to navigate to a full site
• 64% wish they don’t have to scroll left to right
• 61% want to ‘click to call’ button
• 54% want a ‘click to email’ button

Your existing desktop website simply may not be built to deliver these expectations. If you want to keep your existing customers and attract new ones, you need a mobile website.

Why You Need Responsive Mobile Website Design

Did you know that smartphones and tablets have varying screen sizes? This means that a mobile site that loads properly on an iPhone 5S might not look right on the screen of a Samsung Note, which has a bigger screen size.

Don’t worry—responsive design addresses this problem. A responsive site is designed so that its content, structure and images remain the same on any device, no matter how big or small the screen. When a user accesses your responsive site using a desktop, he gets a full view of the site. But when he visits your site from his smartphone, your site will react automatically to fit the smaller screen. By choosing the responsive route, you no longer have to worry about building different websites for different devices.

Google Recommends It

The responsive website design was officially recommended by Google in 2012. It was announced that it’s far more efficient for its bots to crawl, index, and organize a responsive website as there is just one URL and the same HTML across all devices. Google claimed 67% of the search market in 2013, making it the most used search engine in the world. If you get a good portion of targeted traffic from Google, then it’s time to switch to a responsive mobile website. Failing to do this can seriously hurt your rankings.

Gain Better Insight

A mobile website allows you to implement A/B testing and heat-mapping. You can segment users and see how they interact with your site, ultimately discovering which sales strategies work and which ones don’t. You have full control of how conversion elements are displayed, so you can adjust them as necessary.

Provide a Better User Experience

Studies show that 67% of consumers are likely to buy a product when they can immediately find what they are looking for. With responsive design, your users no longer have to zoom and shrink texts or images on a screen. Your content automatically adjusts to their device, so navigating and buying from your site becomes much easier. A responsive design makes users happy and happy users are more likely to convert into paying customers.

A better user experience likewise makes it easier for customers to reach you for any questions or complaints. The easier it is for them to contact you, the less likely they are to go online and complain through social media.