Responsive Website or Mobile?

Posted on Posted in Web Design

Optimized Websites are Essential


Why should you care?

According to Goldman Sachs, by 2015, 81% of U.S. cell users will have smartphones compared to the 56% of smartphone owners now reported by Pew Internet & American Life Project in 2013.
In addition, Cisco reported in 2013 that 65% of U.S. Shoppers research products online and comScore reports that 4 out of 5 consumers use smartphones to shop!

Furthermore, We can’t think of one reason NOT to have a site optimized for mobile users! Can you?

The question is: Do you create a responsive website or a mobile specific website?

You know you need a website or you already have one but it was built way back when… with so many designers and choices, how do you decide what type is best for you?

First, let’s define a responsive website…
“Responsive web design (or “RWD”) is a type of web design that provides a customized viewing experience for different browser platforms. A website created with RWD will display a different interface depending on what device is used to access the site. For example, a responsive website may appear one way on a laptop, another way on a tablet, and still another way on smartphone.” (Source:, 2013)
Since we are comparing the two, what is a mobile website?
“A Mobile Site is a website which is specifically designed for optimum performance when viewed not on a regular computer screen but on a small mobile device such as a cell phone, a PDA etc.” (Source:

All that tech speak aside, the major difference that we will be discussing in this article is the format those two kinds use. A responsive website is designed to resize appropriately when a mobile device or tablet is detected. A mobile site is a completely different site, usually a subdomain like or which needs it’s own design. This means your regular site redirects the user to the subdomain when it detects a mobile browser is being used.

What does MadCityMedia recommend?

When designing sites for our clients, we always take into consideration what their goal is. Some may have sensitive information and want to have a more secure mobile site. Some may want to cut costs by having only one site. However, in general, we recommend going with a responsive site because it will not redirect or appear as a duplicate site which lowers search engine optimization.
For more about using MadCityMedia to redesign or update your site, Click HERE to send us a message.