One of the disturbing trends in web design in small towns is the absence of responsive design in new websites being launched. What is Responsive Web Design. Well, it is design that ensures an optimal viewing experience on a wide range of devices (from mobile phones to tablets and desktop computers).

If your website has been responsively designed, it will automatically adjust to whatever device is being used by the visitor to your website. It will be easy to scroll with one finger. If your website is not responsive, it will be an entirely frustrating experience for any visitor on a mobile device. Users hate having to use their fingers to pinch web pages on mobile devices. If they have to use two fingers to enlarge the screen, they will quickly abandon your website. And that means potential loss of customers.

Not sure if your website has been responsively designed? Use this handy tool, Responsinator, to view what your website looks across a range of mobile devices. (Warning: The results may leave you screaming!)

Why is it an absolute must that your website be responsive? It has been widely reported that mobile users will surpass desktop PC users in 2014. If your new website has been built to be unresponsive (meaning, it is only optimal for viewing on a desktop PC), you are immediately alienating audiences. As a small business you cannot afford to do that.

There is no excuse for new websites being launched in late 2013 or 2014 to not be responsively designed. Web designers need to educate their clients that responsive is mandatory today. And if your web designer or agency doesn’t educate you on this, it’s vital that you find a web designer who is tuned in to the necessity of responsive web design.

As a general rule I always recommend looking at the website of any design agency. If their own website isn’t responsive, that is usually not a good sign of keeping up with today’s design trends.

Useful infographic on responsive web design