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This blog post focuses on the differences between mobile sites and responsive designs and examines the advantages/disadvantages of both.


Before reading this blog, ask yourself two questions:

  1. Do you want your mobile site to run separately from your current website? or
  2. Is it better to build a site that is compatible with desktop PCs and mobile devices?


Mongoose Metrics in 2012 reported that only 9% of sites are mobile friendly. In another case study, Compuware found that 57% of consumers and web users will not recommend a company if it has a poor mobile site. In fact, 40% of consumers and web users will rather visit the competition to find what they are looking for.

As you begin to process the concept of mobile design, two other sub-concepts pop up: Responsive Design and Mobile Site.  This blog post defines the two terms and examines the advantages/disadvantages.

I. Mobile Sites:

Mobile sites are separate websites that users will see when using a mobile device. The site is formatted for a phone-sized screen and may be hosted under their own subdomain. Visitors are directed to the mobile site once the server detects the user to be a smart phone.

II. Responsive Design:

This does not entail the creation of a separate mobile site. A responsive design has a fluid layout that adapts automatically to different screen sizes.  In other words, content will resize depending on whether you are using a smartphone, tablet, or desktop PC.

III. Advantages/Disadvantages:




Responsive Design

  • Use the same code and content on mobile devices and desktop PCs.
  • Creates a fluid screen design that expands, rearranges and sometimes removes content to adapt to different devices and screen sizes
  • Benefits SEO-offers a single responsive site that meets all device needs.
  • Duplicate content isnecessary at times.
  • Resizing images consumes too much CPU and RAM.
  • Unnecessary codes are not removed and still downloaded; causing the loading speed to slow down.

Mobile Sites

  • Faster to implement and less expensive to launch.
  • Only necessary information is shown in the reorganized interface.
  • Only targets one screen size
  • Higher maintenance costs are necessary in the long run.
  • Separate silo of content is needed, separate from the main website.

IV. BusinessMedia:

Be sure to call our Toronto web development team to find out how you can create a separate mobile site for your website.  Those who are building a site for scratch are recommended to consider the advantages of having two separate websites, compatible with mobile devices and desktop PCs. Remember that 97% of consumers take to the internet to find the products and services they are looking for.


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