Flexibility, Functionality: The Benefits of Responsive Website Design

Build it Better: Getting the Most Out of Your WebsitePart of being successful in today’s advanced digital technology world is being able to update your marketing strategy along with the advancement of new platforms. It was 8 years ago that Morgan Stanley, one of the most renowned Fortune 500 companies, predicted a rise in popularity of ‘Mobile Web’ compared to ‘Desktop PCs’ would be coming by 2014. That of course was spot on, and we all now know the broader and more overarching value in keeping a website responsive and mobile friendly.

Here at 4GoodHosting, we’ve established ourselves as a top Canadian web hosting provide, and part of what’s given us that opportunity is the way we strive to be as informative as possible with anything from which our customers stand to benefit. We host a large number of e-commerce and business websites. While we haven’t had to convince these folks of the value of having ‘responsive’ websites, we have had to provide more clarification of just what that involves.

We’re happy to do so here as well, with hopes that it adds value to what is already very affordable Canadian web hosting!

Mobile’s Mega Relevancy

Anyone’s who’s not considering mobile web traffic in their analytic data is likely losing significant revenue. While mobile web technology hasn’t entirely overtaken desktop, it’s quickly on its way to doing so. Be explicitly aware via which devices these new customers are entering your website and embrace how responsive web design will benefit your online marketing strategy.

Defining Responsive Web Design

Here’s a straightforward and sufficiently non-technical explanation – Responsive web design is one where the page loads and then operates with full functionality, whether you access the website URL with a desktop browser or a mobile browser. Site fixtures will rescale, as the page size will be taken into account.

It’s important to understand that there are no separate version of mobile sites or tablet or desktop versions with responsive web design. The website is oriented for maximum flexibility, opening as it should with any respective device. The benefit of this in simple terms? Visitors enjoy optimal readability on all their favorite digital devices.

And when it comes to the construction of the site, responsive web design means that your whole website remains the same at the root, with the minor exception of CSS code changing in response to the specific type of browser.

User-friendly content management systems like WordPress are quite helpful for responsive web design. Many have already helped themselves to one of the many ready-to-go designed templates that are optimized for responsive website design, and that saves time and money. Content is still king and the discoverability of content is one of the foremost success metrics that these individual are pleased to see for themselves.

But responsive web designs biggest boost for Canadian web hosting clients? That’d be improved SEO, and in a big way

Found, Retained, Engaged

By our count, responsive website design has 9 specific appeal points for anyone who’d like better SEO (which, of course, is pretty much everyone set up along the information superhighway)

1) Google Recommendation

Google recommended responsive web design is already common with mobile / traffic / PC, focusing on web and mobile users equally. Google also favours mobile-friendly website for mobile search, and you’ll be better positioned for higher keyword rankings in mobile search.

2) Usability

Google’s aim is to deliver the best and most relevant results for their visitors for any specific search term. Google will make note of immediate return to their SERPs, considering no useful or relevant information on the website. In such instances ‘bounce rates’ (the number of visitors who leave a website immediately or prematurely) increase and your ranking will almost certainly drop.

Whereas with responsive design, visitors will be inclined and able to read and share all the content they want in whatever format they prefer.

3) Duplicate Content:

A website that is not responsive and has duplicate or similar URLs for the desktop, tablet, and mobile versions is more at risk of being latched onto by Google’s Panda algorithm because there is only one URL for the webpage for all digital devices.

4) URL Structure:

Responsive websites have common files/folder for all digital device options. This makes it easy for Google to index the webpages as there is uniformity between them in URL structure. As far as the user experience is concern, this design works best with all devices and your boost in SEO is a reflection of Google’s greater trust as a result.

5) Mobile Search Ranking:

As smartphone begin to race away as the preferred web browsing device these days, a responsive website that caters to their specifics very thoroughly gets big thumbs up from Google. Not to say desktop and tablet suitability isn’t important too, but it’s decidedly less. Good responsive website design will serve all 3 of them relatively equally though, so you shouldn’t need be concerned.

6) Link Earning:

Responsive web design sees back links being common between mobile and desktop versions, meaning the link building values do not diminish if crossing between a desktop URL and mobile URL because – quite plainly – that’s not happening.

7) Local Search Benefits:

Nearly everyone searches on mobile web browsers when out and about and looking to make a purchase or visit an establishment. When your responsive website is available for them you get better mobile traffic and the rankings that go along with it.

8) Reduced Page Load Speed:

Page load speed is a big deal for Google when it weighs how highly you should be ranked. That people tend to be impatient needs no explanation, and with a responsive website design you are MUCH less likely to have would-be visitors / customers refusing to put up with slow load times. Responsive web design will have CSS media queries that work equally well on the different devices, helping to reduce load times.

9) Awesome User Experience / Social Boost:

Responsive web design allows visitors to read and share website content with any digital device. Anyone can see the same shared content on social media via their chosen digital device with almost same loading speed. This in turn increases the likelihood of you being ‘liked’, ‘shared, etc. etc. on social media. And that, of course, is a HUGE boost to your online marketing efforts.

Want to learn more, or ready to have a professional get your website up to speed with being ‘responsive’? Get in touch with us and we’ll point you in the right direction. Wishing you all well as you aim ever higher with your business and its online component!

Digital Uncertainty: Is There a ‘Beyond’ to the Cloud?

Upon being first introduced into public servers – and not that long ago, really – cloud storage and cloud computing was a mysterious entity entirely foreign to the general public, but oh boy did its advantages ever become readily apparent. Cloud storage and computing quickly made significant changes to the way people put their computing devices to work in every way possible, as well as redefining the way companies do business.

However, as is always the way in the digital world, the same question is always ready to go. “What is next in the evolution of personal and business computing?”

Here at 4GoodHosting, we have cemented ourselves as a leading Canadian web hosting provider with affordable rates. Behind all of us here is a genuine interest in developments in the E-world and all that goes along with it. Anyone who’s been as curious as we’ve been over the past decade plus will now that nothing stays ‘new’ for long, and that the engines driving technological advances in computing aren’t one to rest on their laurels.

Let’s have a look at what’s the general consensus on what’s next – if anything – after the Cloud.

Wholesale Changes Aplenty

The cloud has been much more than just a place to store and access data, it has indisputably been an opportunity for growth in the IT world. This has been especially true for people beginning to understand the benefits of mobile business. If we were to list them all we’d fill your screen 20 times over, so let’s look only at the main developments:

  1. Company Data Instantly Accessible From Anywhere

Companies have been trying to figure out more cost effective ways to do their work since the beginning of commerce itself hundreds of years ago. The Cloud has made it feasible to work from almost anywhere, provided there’s an Internet connection. Having an employee or contractor working remotely saves any company quite a bit in overhead costs. It also allows employees to set their own pace and often motivates people to increase their own leisure time by performing their work more efficiently. Without the cloud, only companies that that could afford multi-million dollar servers and IT departments would have been capable of offering that working arrangement for people.

  1. Greater Numbers of the World’s Devices Connected to Each Other

Estimates from 17 years ago had 200 million individual devices connected to the internet. While at first glance that may seem like a large number, it’s not when you weigh the number of people in the world. Now there are an estimated 10 billion devices connected to the internet at some point of every day, and being able to do so with a data storage and sharing system, like the cloud, makes for much more opportunity for world-wide growth and potential innovation.

  1. The Changing Landscape of Business

One thing the Cloud can indisputably boast is having superior data uploading and downloading capabilities. It has made it possible to purchase files on-the-go, and from a sales perspective the ability to tap into the impulses of the market has been wholly revolutionary. It is more important than ever to now connect with the mobile generation and make downloading content quick and easy. The cloud has been what’s allowed that to happen.

The Reach of Web Technology Capable

1899 – well over 100 years ago – saw a patent official state that ‘everything that can be invented, has been invented.’ Asides from being entirely wrong, it’s an amusing anecdote, especially for young people who’ve been right on the front line for the digital technology explosion of the early 21st century. We’ve of course seen gigantic leaps in technology around the planet since. And believe it, we’re not even near done with these advancements.

Future Cloud Computing Models?

No doubt the cloud has been massively successful and continues to be integrated into numerous business models and services, with IT engineers and designers trying to figure out ways to improve its systems. Some improvements have been necessitated by modern usage trends, while others hope to cross into new realms. Some of these aims are as follows:

Increasing Security – The security of the public cloud is one of the biggest concerns associated with it. As more people begin sharing information, what measures are in place to prevent other people from accessing private information? It’s a question that the majority of businesses and individuals take seriously, and cloud designers strive to improve current security options for the growth of future cloud use and expansion. Hybrid cloud configurations are one of the most interesting ways to make security a non-issue, combining a physical server with a private cloud model and restricting them to specific use only.

Expanding Applications – Further, cloud compatible CAD programs are essential to countless industries and companies that produce designs or products. The issue, however, is that many CAD files are too large to be compatible with most mobile devices. However, changes to the way CAD interacts with the cloud is hoping to put an end to this incompatibility, making it possible to work on-site or at the client’s location.

With smart phones and tablets, applications are everything and quite literally drive the manufacturing and marketing industries around them. Changing the way apps interact with the cloud is something that many vendors have been looking long and hard at, and the next generation of cloud-based apps is likely to arrive soon.

Cloud-based businesses – First and foremost here is something known as outservicing. Many of you have heard of outsourcing, but the cloud is in the process of making outservicing a household name too. There are a few aspects of company work that are not unique to individual businesses, and the best example of this is Human Resources. By outservicing HR data to cloud-based companies, small companies are much more likely to receive first-rate HR services for more affordable prices.

Cloud sensor spots – We live in an ever-more digital and impersonal world, but some companies are trying to bring back personal communication. As much as that’s possible. A cloud sensor spot is a field where the cloud interacts with a mobile device in cool and exciting ways. For example, it could give people passing by a certain city spot an opportunity to take advantage of a special deal, or to learn more about a product or service. They’d function in a similar way to Wi-Fi, but with custom content that’s been chosen and uploaded by the owner of the cloud-spot.

Keep an eye out for this one!

The Big & Small

We’ll all surely agree that the Cloud has been well received, and for good reason. But it is likely not the be all-end-all of web connectively solutions, either now and definitely not in the future. However, until whatever’s next materializes itself and is then embraced on a global scale the way Cloud Computing has been, here we are.

Look for the cloud to continue to be a major focus for vendors, large and small businesses, and the general public. As greater numbers of people on the web for specific purposes (and not just web browsing for entertainment or personal research) experiment and share their ideas through data storage systems like the cloud, the faster technology will be pushed to progress.

Waiting for these new developments to come will be a challenge, and again particularly for those like us who love a new digital wrinkle much more than most. It’s all too easy for us to be looking to the horizon, but when you really weigh the value of what we currently have with the cloud it’s really quite easy to be super appreciative.