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Category Archives: programming

Is Your Business Website Ready for the Surge in Mobile-Only Users?

By | Coding, programming, Web Development | No Comments

Responsive web design is the future-friendly method of developing one website to meet the needs of all users, regardless of the device on which the site is being viewed. While responsive design is the preferred long-term solution, there are ways to retrofit and modify a site to save time and money in the short term.
What is Responsive Web Design?

Responsive web design takes the approach that you should design for the user and the devices they use to access your content. It involves adjusting screen resolution, using flexible images and implementing a custom layout structure.

Why is Responsive Design Important?

According to Pew Research 55% of adult Americans access the internet on their phones with 31% of respondents reporting they use their phones a majority of the time. As more people use tablets and mobile phones to surf, search and make purchases, it is in your best interest to make your business site easily accessible across all devices.

A responsive design ensures the same content is accessible to all users without requiring mobile or tablet users to pinch and shift the site around in order to find what they are looking for. There is a lot of competition out there and you don’t want your customers or prospective customers finding the information or products they need on a competitor’s site.

How to Meet the Challenge of Mobile-Only Users

Many businesses may not have the time or budget to rebuild their websites from the ground up. However, there are options out there to retrofit an existing website and make it mobile.

If you want to make sure you are not missing out on the increasing number of mobile-only users you have a few options:

Build a mobile site – Having a separate mobile site is relatively inexpensive to develop, but maintaining two sets of code can be more expensive over time.
Retrofit existing site – a retrofit uses your existing code, so maintenance is easier and more cost effective than maintaining two sets of code. A retrofit makes your site available to a wide variety of screen sizes and you will have to make few changes to your existing site.

Make it mobile compatible instead of responsive — If money and time are an issue there are changes you can make in your existing site that will make it more friendly to mobile users. Simplifying site navigation, using larger fonts and using buttons instead of text links; are all ways that can make your site easier to use on mobile devices.

There is no hard and fast rule that dictates which method is best for updating your existing site. Your budget and the design of your current site will influence how you proceed. However, if your website is over 4 years old, it may be time to give us a call and upgrade anyway.

Sources: Pew Research

Browser Trends Forecasting 2014

By | Digital Trends, programming, Web Development | No Comments

The past two years have seen two browsers make big changes in market share in both the American and global markets. Internet Explorer has lost about 15 points across all versions and Chrome has gained a little more than 15 points in the American market. Globally, Chrome is doing even better as shown in the second image.


What’s behind these changes and what lies ahead? Let’s take a look at our predictions for 2014.

 

Internet Explorer and Chrome Continue to Battle

As it stands, the race for browser dominance is a two-horse race. When Chrome makes big gains, Internet Explorer suffers losses. This trend will continue in 2014, especially in the American market.

IE6 and IE7 may hold steady, but web developers will no longer go to the expense and trouble of accommodating the needs of these outdated browsers.

Safari and Firefox Hold Steady

Safari and Firefox have maintained their share of the browser market over the past two years and there’s no reason that shouldn’t continue. The numbers graphed above are for the desktop versions of the browsers. Safari gets quite a boost when tablet browsers are added to market share calculations.

Opera Loses More Ground

Opera dropped their HTML rendering engine, Presto, and switched to Webkit, the rendering engine used by Safari and Chrome. Unfortunately, this didn’t improve their useage numbers. That’s a pretty big change to see no impact on market share. We predict Opera will continue to lose ground unless it figures out a better way to stand out from the crowd.

Mobile Web Browsers are History

Our biggest prediction for 2014 is that mobile browsers will be replaced by full versions that operate across all devices. We’ll take it a step further and say that 2014 will be the year that responsive web design will be the norm and developers will continue to create sites based on how their visitors access the web.

Affordable Ways Your Business Website Can Meet Demands of Mobile-only Customers

By | programming, Web Development | No Comments

Responsive web design is the future-friendly approach recommended for developing a website to meet the needs of visitors regardless of the device used to view your website. A responsive website adjusts gracefully and maintains functionality whether being viewed on a desktop computer or a mobile phone. If a site redesign is not in the budget, there are ways to help your current site meet the needs of mobile-only customers.

What is Responsive Web Design?

Responsive web design takes the approach that you should design your site based on the devices people use to access your content. A responsive site requires adjustable screen resolutions, flexible images and a custom layout structure.

Why is Responsive Design Important?

The number of mobile-only internet users is on the rise, with teens leading the way. However, teens are not the only age groups using their cellphones to access the web. According to Pew Research 55% of adult Americans access the internet on their phones with 31% of respondents reporting they use their phones a majority of the time. As the number of people using tablets and mobile phones as their preferred devices continues to increase, it is important to make your business site easily accessible across all devices.

A responsive design ensures the same content is available to all users without requiring mobile or tablet users to pinch and shift their way around your site in order to find the information or product they need. If finding the right information on your site is too frustrating, most people will move on to the next site instead of pinching and shifting their way around yours.

How to Meet the Challenge of Mobile-Only Users

Many businesses may not have the time or budget to start from scratch with a responsive redesign, however, there are options available that allow you to retrofit an existing website and make it more mobile-friendly.

Build a Mobile Site

Building a separate mobile site is an inexpensive option to develop, however, maintaining two sets of code can run into higher costs over time.

Retrofit an Existing Site

Retrofitting your site involves using your existing code, so it eliminates the expense of maintaining two sets of code required when building a separate mobile site. Visitors will be able to access your site using a variety of devices and it should require only a few changes to your site.

Retool Your Site to be Mobile Compatible

If your budget doesn’t allow for a complete redesign there are some minor changes you can make in your existing site that will make it easier for mobile visitors to use. Site navigation should be simplified to make it easier to find important information or products. Change the font to one that is easy to read and use a larger size to make it easier to read on when the site is opened on tiny screens. You should also consider using easy-to-see buttons instead of text hyperlinks. These are all changes that will make your site easier for mobile viewers to use.

The most important factors in determining which method works for you are your current site design, the time you have available and your budget. However, if you haven’t updated your site in the past four years, it is time to give us a call and upgrade anyway.

Sources:
Pew Research