Mobile Traffic Soars: Responsive Websites a Must in 2016

April 29, 2016
Posted in Blog
April 29, 2016 Elev8 Media

Mary Meeker made a bold prediction in 2008 that mobile traffic would overtake desktop traffic by 2014. This bold prediction seemed outlandish at the time when there was just 600 million mobile users compared to 1.2 billion desktop users.

But Mary had the foresight to see the future of the Internet before anyone else.

Statistics show the following:

  • Mobile traffic surpassed desktop traffic to account for 1.6 – 1.8 billion users.
  • Mobile traffic continues to soar, with over 1.9 billion people connecting to the Internet using a mobile device in 2015.
  • Desktop traffic is still high in 2015, but it remains in the high 1.7 billion users.

Mobile traffic is becoming the standard on the Internet. People are on the go at all times, but when we have a break, we often use our phones or tablets to check out the latest news, talk on social media, or browse the web for information, services and products.

Using a mobile device is far more convenient than using a stagnant desktop.

Desktop traffic still remains very high and will not witness a major decline in the coming years. What statistics have shown is that we’ve come to the cusp of desktop traffic. A good example of this is looking at the number of global users for desktops over the last few years.

  • The number of global desktop users in mid-2012 was 1.6 billion.
  • The number of global users today is around 1.7 billion on desktop.

Essentially, desktop saturation has occurred were more people are turning to mobile devices that are cheaper and more accessible in some cases. Mobile traffic during the same time period rose dramatically from around 1.4 billion users in mid-2012 to nearly 1.9 billion users in 2015.

Website owners can no longer deny the fact that mobile is the future of the Internet. It’s essential for every website to have a mobile version and a desktop version. After all, you never want to turn away visitors, especially when there are over 1.5 billion desktop users and mobile users.

In terms of hours spent per day on a device, the following is true:

  • Smartphone owners spend 2.8 hours per day on their mobile device.
  • Desktop users spend 2.4 hours per day on their computers.

Keep in mind that these two statistics relate only to United States residents, but all previous statistics are on a worldwide basis.


When someone searches for your website and lands on your page, you want them to be able to view all of your content with ease. If your website doesn’t load properly on a mobile device, you’re missing out on potential leads and harming your chances of retaining current customers.

The truth is that website visitors expect your site to be mobile-friendly.

This expectation requires that your website loads and displays accurately on both the desktop and a mobile device. Websites that were built five years ago often lack mobile-friendly designs. There are even many websites in 2015 that don’t load properly on all devices. The problem is too many screen resolutions came out too rapidly for developers and website owners to accommodate them all.

The answer to this problem is responsive design practices.

A responsive website will render appropriately no matter the screen resolution. If a person is on a tablet or on iPhone, your website will load properly, allowing for:

  • Easy, user-friendly navigation.
  • Fast load speeds that adhere to the best SEO practices.

If your site is not mobile-friendly, you’ll suffer from the following:

  • A loss in the potential leads to your business and website.
  • A loss in current customers due to inaccessible online content.
  • Frustrated visitors that cannot properly navigate your website and find your most important content or offers.
  • Sites that are not mobile-friendly won’t be displayed in Google’s search results, and lose significant traffic to their websites as a result. If your site isn’t mobile-friendly, it can affect your search engine rankings.

And statistics have shown that in 2015, 48% of mobile users will go to a search engine to start their online searches. Imagine closing the door on over 900 million customers because your website was not created with a responsive design.

Responsive web design offers the following benefits:

  • Mobile-friendly design that renders properly despite the user’s screen resolution.
  • Cost-effectiveness due to one website rendering correctly across all devices – there’s no need for a separate mobile website.
  • You’ll be following Google’s own recommendation of having a mobile-friendly website.
  • Website users will have the best possible user experience when visiting your domain.
  • Responsive websites are easy to manage.

Moving into 2016 and beyond, every website must have a responsive design if they want to be able to maximize their profit potential on the Internet. Internet users have come to expect websites to load on desktops and mobile devices. If your site is not mobile-friendly, you’re missing out on over 50% of the Internet’s web traffic.


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