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Mobile and You -- Part 4: Do You Need a Mobile Website?
March 5, 2015

So, now that you have read the previous parts of this series, you are ready to ask the question "Do I need a mobile website?"

Understand that adding a mobile site is not as simple as having your Hudson Valley web designer (that's us!) flip a switch somewhere. You saw in part 3 how mobile sites look and work completely differently from their desktop versions. This means your web designer (that's us!) has much more work to do to create a mobile site.

There are two techniques we can use today to create a mobile website...

Type Description Pros Cons
Mobile Website This is essentially a second website, completely separate from the desktop version of your website. It is tailored to serve your content specifically to smart phones. Simpler and cheaper to create. But involves creating an entire second website dedicated to mobile. May cost more to maintain, as changes in the desktop site must be made separately in the mobile site.
Responsive Website This is a single site that displays well on all types of devices -- desktop browsers, tablets, and smart phones. This means reworking your current desktop site so that all it's content can be displayed on all types of devices.

Displays optimally on most mobile devices.
May cost less to maintain, as changes are made to only one site.

More complex (and costly) to create.


Either one of these options can cost at least as much as the cost of developing your desktop website, and the Responsive site can cost much more. However responsive sites are simpler to update to support new types of mobile devices in the future. Remember all the types of mobile devices we saw in part 1 -- smart TVs, smart watches, game consoles -- they can quite simply be supported by responsive websites. But do we care?

Do You Need a Mobile Website?

Consider these factors:

  • How does your current desktop website look and function on a mobile device? How difficult or easy is it to use from a mobile device?
  • Do you think your website visitors are using mobile devices? See part 1 for more on this, but you may be surprised at how many people are using mobile devices these days. What demographic of users do you hope to attract?
  • Could your website use mobile features -- like location, or photos -- to improve the user experience on your site?

Why should you consider a mobile website in addition to your desktop website?


I hope this series has given you the background to discuss mobile websites. We'll be glad to talk with you in-depth about your current site and whether a mobile site is right for you. Just contact us.


Steve Wehr