Pros & Cons: Which Design Is Best For You?
Check out 4 Site Digital’s website and shrink down your browser to any size. You will notice our website changes and morphs to your browser window size. This is because of responsive design – the automatic adjustment that changes depending on a device’s screen size and orientation.
Responsive design is a flexible solution that scales and stacks images, content, and other website features based on the size and orientation of the browser and the device used. 4 Site Digital designs responsive websites that are ideal for updating content with a single URL and improving search engine design, without website redirection.
Responsive website design is an affordable option for your business that can be accessed on any mobile device, compared to developing a separate, mobile app. Although apps have faster speeds and a more fine-tuned user experience, mobile apps are not universally compatible, as the application needs to be tailored to a device’s operating system. Having a responsive design also cuts down on updating time because of the single URL, whereas maintaining both a standard and mobile website or application requires separately updating each platform to edit, add, or remove content.
Although we recommend using responsive websites for your business, it’s not the ultimate solution—but it is a good one. Here are some of the most important pros and cons between using a Responsive Design, Mobile Website, or a Native App.
- A responsive website will adjust accordingly to screen size and orientation in a fluid motion.
- Single URL – Only one domain. Redirects avoided.
- Easy to make adjustments and changes to the website – only one site to update
- Universally acceptable on any device, including new devices with different screen sizes
- Google recommended: Same HTML = Better SEO
- Longer download times
- Content not easily transitioned from a standard website to responsive design – potentially major overhaul
- Important features may be overlooked due to content stacking or scaling
- More costly to create new responsive site
Mobile Site Design
- Server delivers optimized pages that are smaller and easier to navigate
- Fast and easy loading on mobile devices
- Mobile sites provide improved rankings on mobile-friendly search engines, like Google
- More cost effective than developing an app
- Must create a different, second domain name, which can hurt organic search traffic
- Links shared on mobile websites do not count towards search link equity on your primary site
- Could require higher maintenance for next-generation mobile platforms and operating systems.
- Multiple, separate updates for desktop and mobile sites
Native App Design
- Better user experience because of optimization for certain devices
- Many more features and creativity can go into designing a native app
- Once downloaded, the app will remain on the device in the apps menu
- Apps can operate without internet connection – better accessibility than websites
- Apps are not accessible on all devices – they must be tailored to a particular operating system
- All updates for the app must be approved by the app store.
- App development can be expensive in addition to having a primary website
- Ongoing maintenance for updating content and also technological updates