We live in a mobile, web enabled world. By the day, the number of people who are accessing websites using smart phones or tablets is increasing. Watching this trend, good web developers sought to deliver a better experience for people using mobile devices, and “responsive web design” was born as a result.
So what is responsive web design?
Responsive web design is the process of creating websites (and all other online material, eg email messages and newsletters) that provide an optimal user experience regardless of the type of device used to access the site. The desired outcome is an easy reading and navigation experience across all devices with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling.
When applied properly, responsive sites work automatically across a wide range of devices – including traditional website views on desktop computer monitors and laptops through to mobile phones, tablets and other devices.
What does a responsive site look like?
Responsive sites work well when being viewed either in landscape or portrait mode. In the image below (thanks to Google Australia), we show the difference between a site that has been created responsively, and one that uses an older, non-responsive and therefore non-mobile friendly design.
Why is it important?
Responsive web design is important to provide visitors to your website or investor centre with a usable web experience.
IRM’s statistics of investor website views over the last two years clearly show the rising trend towards mobile website access. Investors are on the move! We’re doing some specific research on the numbers and will publish them in a later blog.
Now the stakes are getting higher. A few weeks back, Google updated its search algorithm to favour sites which are mobile-friendly. Now, when a Google user searches for a term, Google notes whether the sites that land in the search results are “mobile-friendly” or not. So unfriendly sites will rank lower in Google searches.
IRM’s approach to responsive design
For the last 18 months or so, all new or redesigned IRM websites have responsive design. It’s just part of what we do at IRM.
For most existing clients, we’ve changed them over to responsive. Those who aren’t changed over yet, we know who you are! Its been a challenge for us to make sure our 170 client websites have kept up. But that’s why clients are with IRM, to leave these problems to us.
We’ve included a few examples below.
To see how the sites look on your own phone or device, pull out your phone or tablet and have a look at these sample IRM sites – try landscape and portrait:
As year end continues to approach at a rapid rate of knots, Art Director – Matt White covers some more of the common questions that clients have been considering when formulating the best content and structure for their reports.
This is a second post in a special Annual Report planning series – view our first post here.
IRMatters: Annual reports are usually long documents – how can you avoid your key points from getting lost in the detail?
Matt White: To avoid the trap of losing your key messages, it’s good to preface each section with a summary paragraph recapping strategy and outlining results… and language must be kept simple.
IRMatters: How important is including a mission and vision statement?
Matt White: Including these statements up front in an annual report is usually a favourable approach – here’s why:
- Readers need to understand quickly and simply why you did what you did and the difference you made. Recap your mission, vision and values and allow your achievements to shine.
- One of the best ways to get your message across is through vision.
- To go with your vision/mission, a relevant, well captioned, photograph helps depict an outcome and reaffirms achievements. Infographics work well, too, as do pull quotes and eye-catching headings.
IRMatters: How important is attention to detail?
Matt White: Attention to detail is absolutely vital to the whole annual report process. Here are some basic principles to keep in mind during the proofing process:
- Ensure you have proof read your document.
- Remember that when you’ve been looking at the same document for a long period of time, glossing over things becomes easier, so it’s a good idea to have a second (and sometimes third) pair of eyes who can proof read for you.
- More often than once, companies have made errors with their financial statements due to lack of attention to detail – work to ensure that all figures in the financials add up.
- Check that names of staff, donors or partner organisations are spelt correctly – and that they are spelt in full in the first instance, before applying acronyms.
IRMatters: What sort of options are available for companies planning annual reports?
Matt White: These days there are many options available to clients – from less complex annual reports, which incorporate a well-designed, colourful cover alongside a basic print and table structure; through to full colour, image and graphic-rich reports. IRM works with clients across the full spectrum.
It’s also important to note that where we design a print report for a client, we also recommend including an online report, so that investors can read the report in the format that they prefer. See some examples of our online annual reports here.
Special offer available with every annual report ordered before 30 June
Contact us today to get a no-obligation quote on your annual report. All clients that order an annual report prior to 30 June will receive either a discount off the price of the report, or a free Silver online annual report to accompany the printable version. To request a quote, please fill out your details here.
Alternatively – if you’d prefer to discuss your requirements, please contact Matt White via: email – firstname.lastname@example.org or phone: +61 2 8233 6168.
We’ve always been proud of our personal service and quick response to support requests. To continue to improve our support, we’ve grown our team.
We have two new client support team members, another web developer and expanded our marketing team. Jeff, Mischelle and Raanz already have several months of IRM experience and are now delivering good results for you behind the scenes. And we’ve just recruited Rosanna (you can call her Sanna) who will be helping us with marketing.
We’ve also recently implemented SugarCRM as our key support tool. It contains all the latest information, support requests and work in progress for every client, and is accessible real time by all of our team.
Now, anyone at IRM can assist with any query, so you don’t need to rely on tracking down your account manager.
Email enquiries and support requests can still be directed to the individuals you know in IRM – there’s no need to change. Alternatively you can email email@example.com. Either way, a member of the support team will pick up the request, and the best person will action it quickly.
Still personalised, now backed by a bigger team with better systems, and more improvements to come, our support service will hopefully just keep getting better.