Choosing Responsive Web Development or a Native App

April 5, 2015

Don’t let the term scare you: a responsive website is one that has been modified for viewing on tablets and smartphones. Responsive web developers design your site in a way that renders it “responsive” to mobile devices.

In the midst of the mobile craze, you may be tempted to assume that apps are the only way to compete in the new mobile environment. In other words, you might be inclined to believe that apps are replacing web pages, and the only way for your business to get the attention of the millions of mobile users in the digital space is for you to make your own, but that’s not necessarily true.

Developing an app is costly in terms of both time and money. Your business needs a mobile presence, but how do you determine what kind of presence you need?

Who are your customers? This question will help you understand how your clients are finding your business and by what means they are buying your products and services. The habits of iPhone users differ from those of Android, Window’s, and Blackberry phone users. Some other important questions might be about functionality: Do Blackberry users have prefer shopping through their web browser? Do iOS users feel more secure in a native app?

Who are you? If, for example, you’re a consultant, then most of your client relationships are handled in face-to-face meetings. Likewise, if you own a restaurant, then you just need a convenient way for people to find you, as 99% of your customer engagement happens at your place of business. This means you most likely need a responsive site coupled with SEO strategies to leverage the Internet for better business.

But before you jump the gun: understand that, while developing a responsive website is going to be cheaper than developing a native app, it still may not be cheap. Responsive web development doesn’t just mean resizing pages to be viewed on mobile devices, but also making it compatible with the touch-screen habits of the mobile space: tapping, swiping, and pinching. Phone numbers should be automatically dial-able and text fields should be touch intuitive.

In the end, it boils down to you: Work with your team, send out client surveys, and brainstorm some ways you can identify the trends of your customers so that you can maximize the efficiency of your business’ mobile presence. As a responsive web development company, if you need information about building a responsive website for your business, feel free to contact us for a free quote and check out our portfolio.