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Mobile First Design: The Future of Website Design
Posted by WDS on 07 April 2020 08:55 am

There is a new buzz word around the Internet known as Mobile First Design. But just what is mobile first design and why should you be paying attention? We’ll explore the definition, benefits, and give you actionable steps on how to ensure your website is mobile first in this Webtivity exclusive.

What is Mobile First Design?

Mobile first design is the next iteration of what’s known as responsive web design. This methodology of creating websites ensures that the website size changes and adapts to the size of the screen of the device accessing it. This adaptability allows visitors across various devices, including desktops, to have a seamless experience while visiting your website.

To achieve mobile responsiveness, website designers use two approaches. Progressive advancement, which starts the website design at its most basic, then adds more advanced features while checking backward compatibility across various devices. Or graceful degradation, this method begins with a sophisticated website with all features included subsequently compatibility across devices is achieved working backward.

Progressive advancement is the most straightforward approach to mobile responsiveness. IT is what gave rise to the concept of mobile first. Mobile first assumes that you design a website with mobile device users in mind first. Then more advanced features are added while working towards customizing the mobile first website to other devices with larger screens such as desktops.

Mobile User Trends

Why all the hullabaloo about mobile website visitors? Well, take a look at the graph below.

Mobile First Design

Source: StatCounter

Mobile users currently outnumber desktop users and continue to widen the gap on the Internet. Smartphone sales have consistently outpaced desktop device sales since 2011. It’s readily apparent why. A smartphone is magnitudes cheaper than a computer, and increasingly mobile devices can do almost anything a desktop computer can, albeit slower. Put simply, the future online is mobile. Search engines are aware of this and have reacted accordingly. Websites with a mobile focus get a nice bump in their search engine rankings.

Practicing the Mobile First Doctrine

There are several ways to accomplish the mobile first process. The easier of the two, is to use a theme from a Content Management System such as WordPress.  Newer themes  are  jumping on the mobile first train. From there, all that’s needed is the crack skills of a trusted designer to customize your website. They can ensure all customizations to your liking don’t break the mobile first goal of your website.

The second approach is to build a completely custom website. The custom approach is the harder of the two methods and involves using device mocking apps to design a website that first caters to mobile visitors then slowly adapt it to desktop devices using the progressive advancement approach. We recommend a dedicated designer who is familiar with the needs of various mobile platforms for this technique.

Are you ready to upgrade your website to a mobile first design? Give Webtivity a call at 941-753-7574 or send us a message by clicking here.

The post Mobile First Design: The Future of Website Design appeared first on Webtivity Marketing & Design.

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Mobile Matters
Posted by Troy Newport on 21 April 2015 10:48 am

Food for thought: 330 Million Americans using some 200 Million smartphone devices who tend to use their smartphone as ones ‘life remote’.  A May 2014 study from Google revealed near 60% of consumers use Google search every month to find ‘local’ information in which 1 in 5 local searches leads to an in-store purchase.  These numbers are climbing as I’m certain you’ve stood in line at a retail spot or grocer noticing someone around you scouting a better online deal than what’s in front of them.


This is a telling tale as to the present consumer experience with less than 1 in 10 websites being built mobile responsive with a mindful multi-screen strategy approach to your customers.  Without a strategic digital approach your organization might be one of the many who don’t enjoy being a part of the 61% mobile searches leading to a warm phone call inquiring about your product or service – locally.

Why does this matter?  Interconnectivity.  While you may not buy the latest smart washing machine or smart fridge just yet, the world around you is!  CISCO forecasts some 30+ Billion through to as high as 65+ billion connected smart devices which will blanket our world over the course of the next 5 years!  Imagine every consumer touch point digitized and analyzed by Marketing Technologists [like us] who use this information to give you precisely the right product and service at the moment you are looking for that product or service.  Furthermore, when this “Eco-System” captures your smartphone movements (either in your hand, in your pocket, or in your car), enticing you to purchase what you already want through couponing has been found to compound in-store traffic.  This, a marketers holy grail, is here upon us now.

Macy’s rolled out their iBeacon pilot test through 2014.  After review, Kent Anderson, president of Macy’s said, “The customer who gets more engaged in more of the channels that Macy’s has to offer gives us more wallet share.”  This truism applies to your best customers too!

What’s next?  As the beacon environment stabilizes, this micro-location targeting technology will boost local economies.  Those groups that pull together to collect, share and market to their local business ecosystems directly will benefit greatest here!  It’s no secret shopping local returns twice the economic value than in shopping at multinational entities who currently house over $1.6 Trillion dollars offshore outside of the USA.

As technology adapts and accelerates, I hope you and your organization has a strategic marketing technology plan to leverage one of the greatest opportunities in the last century and half – what’s your part of the $15+ trillion digital economy will you are hoping to capture?  Better yet – are you prepared?

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Responsive Design vs Mobile Websites vs Mobile Apps
Posted by Troy Newport on 07 March 2013 08:25 am

My goodness technology moves fast!  Only 2 years ago I was blogging about the difference between mobile websites and mobile apps.  Today responsive design is adding a whole new consideration for your website project.   Many aren’t sure of the differences between these mobile approaches to marketing.  Before you can choose the type of mobile experience you want to build, you need to consider your audience.  If they are viewing your website on a mobile phone, do they want the same experience and information you offer on your main website?  Chances are they are accessing your mobile website for a completely different reason than they would your main website. 

For example, your website may contain a lot of content  the average visitor wouldn’t want to try to consume on a mobile device.  In that case you may want to consider having a small mobile website that provides the most pertinent information about your business, the easiest ways to reach you, and then provide a link to your main website.  Or your typical visitor may want to be able to interact with your company and save account information on their mobile device.  In that case you may want to think about a mobile app. 

Once you have assessed how mobile visitors will want to interact with you, here are a few things to keep in mind:

Responsive Design
This is a newer approach to web design where your website will sort of “morph” to fit the devices accessing it.  In other words, your main website (and all its content) will be optimized for viewing on desktops, tablets and mobile phones.  Depending on the nature of your website it can be tricky to make it responsive and may add a lot of additional development time.  This option may not be viable for websites using some ecommerce or content management frameworks.  But when responsive design is indicated and it’s pulled off correctly, it can be a great asset to your users.

An example of responsive design:
(view on your desktop, tablet and mobile phone to see how the website re-sizes itself)

Mobile Website
This approach works well when your audience needs an abbreviated version of your website, and is most likely accessing it on-the-go.  When your website detects someone is accessing it with a mobile phone, it automatically serves the visitor with a separate mobile website.  The website is usually found on a sub-domain (e.g.,, in a folder of the main website (e.g., or on a separate URL (e.g.,  You typically want to give visitors the option to view your main website if they choose.

An example of a mobile website:

Mobile App

A mobile app is developed for mobile phone platforms like iPhone and Android, and must be downloaded onto the phone from an app store.  Mobile apps have capabilities that mobile websites don’t, so there can be advantages to using a mobile app if you need to interact with your visitors in a unique way that can’t be accomplished easily (or at all) with a mobile site.  Because there are many different mobile phones with various operating systems, mobile apps can be very expensive to develop and maintain.  Every time a new operating system is released (which happens often–this is technology we’re talking about here!) you will need to update your app.  An ongoing budget will also be required for bug fixing.

An example of an app:


So remember:  consider your audience and how they are interacting with you; consider the technologies you need; and then choose the right strategy for your mobile properties.  Your visitors will love you for it!



The post Responsive Design vs Mobile Websites vs Mobile Apps appeared first on Webtivity Internet Marketing Blog.

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Is Your Website Mobile-Friendly?
Posted by Troy Newport on 25 August 2011 11:46 am

Increased Smartphone Penetration Causes Mobile Browsing to Skyrocket

If you’re like 100 million other Americans, you use your smartphone to browse the internet each month.  Whether looking for a phone #, office location, or doing online banking, mobile surfing will continue growing in leaps and bounds.  What does your website look like on a mobile device?

Think about your own internet surfing habits: if you go to a website and it’s hard to find what you’re looking for, or it doesn’t display properly on your computer, what do you do?  You leave and find another website that conveniently serves the information you’re looking for.  This is especially true in the mobile environment.  People surfing on their phones (or tablets, or iPads)  are typically on the go, and especially pressed for time.  They aren’t in a mood to deal with your non-optimized-for-mobile-device website.

When someone arrives, you want your website to recognize if they are arriving via a mobile device.  If so they should automatically be directed to a special website that is designed to display well on a smaller screen.  Technologies such as Flash and JavaScript which are commonly used on websites cannot work on many mobile devices, so your main website may not display or function properly.

For example, our main company website has large photos to better promote our work and our messaging.  It also uses technology that does not translate well to a mobile device.  As a result, if someone arrives at our website on a mobile device, this is the website to which they are automatically directed:  Sure, it looks funny on your desktop computer.  But it loads super-fast and is easy to navigate on a mobile phone.  People can easily call or email us, or obtain directions to our office.  If they are inclined they can read more about us and even visit our full website if they choose.

The investment for a mobile website is a small one.  Remember, you don’t have to translate every page of your main website into a mobile site; just give mobile visitors a few pages of the most important information they need in order to do business with you.  With such a simple deployment, you open your company to those 100 million people who surf the internet on their mobile devices each month.  And don’t forget: people who adopt and use technology tend to have more disposable income.  Don’t you want to target them?

Learn more about mobile website design.

(Don’t forget — now that you have a mobile website, you can take advantage of QR codes and Microsoft Tags!)

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