Mobile Website, Responsive Website or an App?

Mobile Website, Responsive Website or an App?

Crush Design has just completed a mobile specific website for CK Science.

Society is going mobile, this can not be denied. I am expecting 50% of internet traffic to our clients websites to be from a mobile device in 2014 and we have evolved our design service accordingly. All websites are now built to be responsive. But is this always enough? When should we / do we recommend a purely mobile website or an app?

There are occasions when visitors to a website want, or need, more from the mobile version of a website. Recruitment is a great example where a mobile device is an important tool in the way that candidates can surreptitiously search for jobs at work, away from their current employer’s gaze and internet access.

We had already launched a modern website for CK Science with advanced search capabilities that integrated with their internet job database and a candidate self management suite .

They thought an App would be a great investment to support this new development. However we felt that, whilst we can and have built Apps, this may not be the way to go;

–  Apps are great for developing long term relationships, but job hunting is inherently short term.
–  Candidates will not want a recruitment app visible on their phone
–  Apps are expensive to build so was it really worth it given this short term issue?
–  Apps have to be built in both iOS and Android, doubling the cost.
–  To integrate the App with the job data was going to be even more expensive

Our proposal was to create a mobile specific website instead. This could offer all the functionality that a new app promised and more; be compatible across all phones and be linked to the web-based job database; but could be built for a fraction of the cost.

The recently launched mobile site has a bespoke mobile style sheet and the content has been stripped back to only provide the information people want on a phone – job search, application and who to contact.

The mobile design is ‘fat finger friendly’ for a good user experience and can be used by all browsers regardless of the operating platform.

So in this case a mobile website was the right choice.

Other current client projects have gone down a different path; we are due to launch an App for a leading cosmetics / beauty brand; and are working with one of the big six energy suppliers to design a fully responsive website that includes a Power Cut section designed ‘mobile first’.

We will publish our thoughts on these project when they go live.