Responsive Website vs. Mobile Application: Which One Should You Choose?

Tablets and smartphones are quickly becoming the most preferable choice for browsing the Internet. According to eMarketer, over 58% of adults in America will regularly use mobile phones by 2016 for surfing the Internet. Similarly, Mashable reports 17.4% of global web traffic coming from mobile devices in 2013.This means that ecommerce website development has to focus on going mobile if they wish to increase their sales and boost their goodwill.

The ecommerce developers can consider making a fully responsive site or an app for reaching out to their mobile customers. Ideally, both are essential to retain old customers and attract new ones. However, the timing of implementing them differs. While a mobile app is device specific (Android, iOS), a responsive site is a one-size fit all solution. The need is to know when to implement which solution for making a successful, big customer base. This is possible by knowing the pros and cons of each of them so that you can accordingly direct your ecommerce website development plan.

Responsive Design

According to Google, responsive design is ideal for mobile optimization. Such a site is capable of adjusting to fit any screen, whether it is of laptop, PC, tablet, or smartphone. This is done by expanding or shrinking the design elements on each page.


  • Easy administering and efficient monitoring due to a single site
  • Quick finding on mobile devices due to same URL, which means no redirects
  • Good for SEO due to all traffic on single site
  • Access to same content on different screens
  • Easy marketing
  • Long-term compatibility with new and upcoming devices
  • Efficient in terms of cost due to single site maintenance


  • High setup cost
  • Slow loading on still prevalent outdated browsers or devices

Promotion of Brands through The internet

With the advent of the internet, the online marketing has also increased a lot. According to researchers, it has been estimated that about 60% increase in the sales is due to the online marketing on a social website. Online marketing is important because now people don 't see the promotion of products on banners, brochures or leaflets. The product promotion on social websites has been increased. Web crawlers see everything on the internet. Through the internet and social media sites, they come to know about different products and brands.

Online Marketing through Social Profiles

You can make a social media profile and can go on with the online marketing. Every company now makes a social media profile to increase the promotion of their products and brands. Increased promotion increases the overall sales margin. So online marketing is very helpful and advantageous for the business owners and marketing sector of an organization. Online marketing is cost effective and very cheap and consumes very less time.

Mobile App

This is an increasingly popular kind of mobile development wherein an app is designed to execute over the Internet on a mobile phone. The app merges the Web's versatility with the touch devices' functionality. This means that apart from having the same desktop stuff, the app allows using device-specific features such as GPS data, galleries, and camera.


  • Superb user experience
  • Feature rich
  • Visibility via iconic representation on screen, no need to remember URL
  • Access to basic information possible even without Internet


  • Operating system based; not compatible with others
  • Expensive solution
  • Marketing and SEO from scratch
  • No flexibility due to approval of app updates needed from the store

Both the methods are effective for mobile optimization methods but the selection depends on business goals, budget, and customer preferences. Both can work together but it is better to start with a responsive design and then later implement the app.