What 10 Years of the iPhone Has Done to Non Mobile Friendly Sites.

This June marked the tenth year since the release of the iPhone, and this product shaped much more than just the way we interact with the world around us. It changed the way the internet works for us.

Since the release of the iPhone and other smart devices, Google has incrementally been changing it’s search algorithms to reward sites that are optimized for mobile in contrast to those that are not. Moreover, people who are used to mobile design are losing trust in websites that are using non-responsive design.

But what does that even mean?

It means two things. First, sites that aren’t optimized for mobile have 10 years of Google search algorithm updates working against them. Second, it means that sites that aren’t optimized for mobile aren’t accomplishing conversion goals.

From a web traffic perspective

A non-responsive site will get pushback from Google. This is a trend that isn’t going away. Every few months, Google lets out noticeable changes to its algorithm. (Here is a list of major algorithm changes). Over the past 2-3 years, many of these changes have de-listed non-responsive sites and boosted the ranking of responsive sites.

But why is Google doing this? Because today, more than half of all search traffic is done on a mobile device. Google wants to provide the best experience possible to its users, and that’s exactly what it’s doing.

From a conversion perspective

Beyond my personal instinct to cringe when I accidentally come across non responsice sites, the data doesn’t lie. People don’t trust old websites. This is reflected by low conversion rates, high bounce rates, and a lack of activity on non-mobile friendly websites. To top it off, if you are in an industry that is considered to be technologically advanced and you are using a non-mobile responsive site, you are putting your reputation at risk.


Surprising as it is, many companies still have yet to adopt a mobile friendly website. This means they are being de-listed in comparison to the competition who have adopted mobile friendly tech in their sites, and they are not converting anywhere near what they should be.

What a switch to responsive means 10 years after the iPhone release.

Not surprisingly, a switch to mobile today has a bigger impact than ever before. It contributes both to an inflow of new traffic via improved organic rankings and better conversion rates. Below are a few examples of case studies from companies who made the switch (These are not TRU clients, they are examples I have aggregated for the purpose of this article).

Skinny Ties – Ecommerce

  • Revenue from all devices increased by 42.4%
  • Revenue from iPhone grew by 377.6%

Kollective – Enterprise Software

  • 86% Increase in overall traffic
  • 350% Increase in conversions

Estling Village – Housing

  • 89% increase in organic search
  • 78% increase in overall conversions

ShipHawk – Logistics Automation

  • 84% Increase in Site Conversion Rate
  • 17% Decrease in Organic Search Bounce Rate

How do they benefit so much? It’s simple, these are sites with a moderate web history and one strong factor pulling them back. The switch is sure to boost performance.

In short, although non-responsive sites are literally a decade behind the curve, these are the companies who have the most to gain by pursuing responsive design and pursuing digital.


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