Written by: Mar Reguant
Most likely you have repeated a thousand times that your website must be responsive. Do you know exactly what it means and why it is so important for your hotel’s website?
Increasingly, users are searching on their iPads or smartphones. The desktop computer is being relegated for many of the immediate consultations. Google, in its data of 2015 surveys, saw a rise of 50% from smartphones searches related to travel. And these numbers will only increase.
The responsive technique seeks adapting a website content to be displayed correctly on any device. That is, to suit the different screen sizes.
And this, what does it mean? It does not mean that some content of your website will be eliminated, reduced or that the text will be smaller. A responsive design resizes and repositions all the elements and features of that particular page to display correctly and optimally, improving user experience.
This includes images, text, graphics and, of course, any kind of functionality that includes your page, for example, a booking engine. It is very important that if a user wants to book you a room from his mobile phone, doesn’t get on his nerves. It's difficult enough to work on small screens and if you don’t make your web easy to navigate on any device, you will lose the direct booking. And you don’t want that, do you?
In short, the responsive design makes your website much more natural on any device. In addition, Google already warned last year on planned changes to its algorithm that would benefit responsive websites, on the contrary, would penalize those non-customizable designs.
Why Google applies these measures? Among other things, it seeks a fully mobile-friendly experience and this is something that websites, which are not yet adaptable, do not offer.
In the end, Google is the one who offers the user a search results according to his criteria. If a non-web-friendly appears in the top results of Google, is that the search is not properly doing its job: it is offering the user a low-quality result. And Google never wants to have a bad reputation.
Don’t you know if you have a responsive website? Very easy, just enter your URL in the Google Developers analyzer and you will know if you need to make changes to your site. Don’t hesitate to consult with experts in the field if you have any doubt.
1. Because it improves your SEO positioning. Google positively values web pages that work with a customizable design. A responsive design means a better SEO positioning in Google, as the mobile adaptation allows Google successfully track the content of the page and position it for the right searches. Thus, Google only need to track a URL for all devices.
2. Because it improves the user’s usability. The adaptable design will help your users feel comfortable while browsing your website, no matter what device they will be using. Your potential customers must be able to optimally see your website from any type of screen size. It is noticeable at first sight when a page is not adapted and navigation is almost impossible.
3. Because technology has undergone a radical change. In just a few years we have move from clicking our mouse to touch a screen in order to navigate, i.e. we have move from using a desktop computer to moving everywhere with our smartphone. A website that has become obsolete cannot adapt to all these changes if it is not renewed.
4. Because you save on costs. An adaptive design will be functional and usable on any device and screen. With a single website adapted, you will be sure all your users will navigate comfortably from any mobile, tablet or computer. You'll be having in mind all users! Wherever the look for you.
5. Because the loading time decreases. A responsive website is automatically adjusted according to the device from which you visit, so you don’t need to redirect it and that way its loading time is much lower.
6. Because it improves sharing your site on social media. If you want users who visit your website to share content on social networks, you should make this step easier for them. An adapted website facilitates the functionality of content sharing.
7. Because videos and pictures are your best presentation. If your website is not responsive a user won’t be able to properly consume that type of content. Your hotel’s site image gallery must adapt perfectly to the size of each screen. Any user should be able to scroll through the images as easily (or more) as if he did from your computer. Of course, it goes without saying that your audiovisual material optimization must be very well worked for quick loading and playback of all your files.
8. Because it will optimize the usability of your booking engine. Make sure the steps and clicks on your booking process are the less possible. That way it will be easy for your user to book directly on your website, although you he is browsing from his mobile.
And, of course, check every change you make. Make tests continuously. Visit your website as if you were another user: from your computer and from your mobile. Make sure your site is user-friendly and don’t hesitate to make the necessary changes if you think your user will not feel comfortable or satisfied with some of your web’s functionalities.