Yes, you do need a mobile responsive website
More than ever, the use of mobile devices has shifted the way we search for, explore and choose our service providers. If your competitors are not mobile responsive, they soon will be, so it makes sense to get your business as accessible to your market as possible.
Regardless of where you find them, the statistics all point to the fact that a huge chunk, if not the biggest chunk, of website users are searching for providers of services from the convenience of the devices they have to hand -which, obviously, is more often going to be their phone or tablet. It's always 'online', it's always in the pocket and it's always ready to go. We no longer need to actually 'move' or 'fire up a computer'.
But we don't need to dig around boring statistics, graphs and charts to find out what we already know, it is perhaps easier for us to engage with our own experience and common sense. How many of us will find ourselves sitting with our phone and browsing where to eat with our friends the next day, or taking a quick look into a present idea while on the bus?
When our urge to "Google It" gets the better of us -as it so often does- we find ourselves grabbing the nearest device and browsing through the available options, quickly discounting those that fail to deliver the information we need. Common sense and our own experience tells us that if a service provider's website is unusable on a mobile device, they are going to miss out on a LOT of business. They'd miss out on yours, wouldn't they?
What is a mobile responsive website?
A mobile responsive website is simply one that is optimised to shrink down to the size of the screen on which it is being viewed.
The alternative to this is a website which -when viewed on a mobile- has tiny text which forces us to "pinch zoom" into the page, attempt to scroll sideways and doesn't click through to other pages very well. In short, it's a bad user experience which does not inspire confidence in the consumer, nor does it give them the information they want.
In addition, most websites that are (currently) unfriendly to our smartphones are likely to have other obstacles that the customer would need to overcome in order to actually get in touch with the service provider. For example, a website that is dated enough that it isn't mobile friendly will most likely still have an email address displayed, which -at best- opens a pop up to an email client that is native to the device. This doesn't work on mobiles. And what about "Click to call"? Customers expect that these days.
When a mobile responsive website shrinks down, it is most often to a single column which displays the most important information to the viewer, simplifies their navigation experience and gets them to the 'Buy', 'Call' or 'Book' button with ease.
That's what you want, isn't it?
Will it cost more?
No doubt you have checked out a few website agencies (you should, if you haven't) and found that "Mobile Responsive" is often an added feature for an extra charge. This may have left you wondering if you can do without it. You can't.
While many web developers and agencies still charge extra for mobile responsive functionality, I believe that's like selling a car and charging extra for the wheels.