Making sure your website is displayed in search results is influenced by the mobile website configuration you use. Currently, there are three different configurations you could use and it is important to understand the differences between these and what benefits and drawbacks they offer.
Responsive Web Design Pros
- Responsive web design is the preferred design recommend to be used by Google.
- Website addresses (URLS) are the same for desktop and mobile users.
- Displays are adjusted to fit the display size of the screen.
- HTML code is the same for both desktop and mobile pages.
Responsive Web Design Cons
- The only drawback to using this method is you must make sure the on-page content is optimized for smartphone users. This means adjusting the paragraph lengths so they fit neatly on smartphone screens and utilizing images and videos when appropriate.
Dynamic Web Design Pros
- Dynamic web design was first used as the web browsing capabilities of mobile devices improved, prior to the development of responsive design.
- Website addresses (PURLS) are the same for desktop and mobile users.
- A good design option when you do not want to redesign your current website, but want to offer mobile-friendly browsing experiences.
Dynamic Web Design Cons
- HTML code is not the same and requires developing different code for desktop and mobile versions.
- The HTML code used is based upon what type of device is being used to connect to the website.
- Requires more development and design time to roll out a brand new website.
Separate URL Design Pros
- Separate URL web design was initially used when mobile devices first began to have Internet browsing capabilities.
- Can be beneficial for companies that want to have two different versions of their website.
Separate URL Design Cons
- This design method requires building two different websites – one for desktop users and one for mobile users.
- The website addresses (URLS) will be different for each design.
- HTML code has to be developed for each site page.
- Web page redirects are needed to redirect mobile users accessing the desktop version and vice versus.
- Can be more costly to maintain and update web pages.
- Google gives different ranking placements in search results for each site.
- Could result in lower search engine rankings if content is duplicated and not original on each site.
Even though Google does recommend responsive web design, it does not penalize businesses that chose to use another method of mobile and desktop website development. The key thing to remember is that all pages should be accessible by Google’s web crawlers and “bots” in order to have the pages indexed so they will display in search results.
In addition, if your desktop version relies heavily on Flash video, you will want to have a different mobile design, since most mobile devices can have a difficult time rendering Flash video pages and typically results in unplayable content.
For assistance in determining which mobile website design and configuration is best for your website, please feel free to contact the web design and development experts at Webryze by phoning (416) 900-1047 today!