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You should have a site that is at least responsive or renders fine on a mobile device. Do you need a "standalone" mobile site? That really depends...

If you're a plumber then yes you'd probably want a standalone mobile version. When people need your services it's NOW and the benefits of a mobile site in that situation are many... You however build custom decks... People will likely want to see detailed pictures of your work on a larger device than their smart phone and probably don't make their buying decision based on their first visit to your site.

I would just consider a responsive WP theme for your site and call it a day.
 

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You should have a site that is at least responsive or renders fine on a mobile device. Do you need a "standalone" mobile site? That really depends...

If you're a plumber then yes you'd probably want a standalone mobile version. When people need your services it's NOW and the benefits of a mobile site in that situation are many... You however build custom decks... People will likely want to see detailed pictures of your work on a larger device than their smart phone and probably don't make their buying decision based on their first visit to your site.

I would just consider a responsive WP theme for your site and call it a day.
Did you get a hold of Greg Fay?
 

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Responsive design is the way to go according to Google. They prefer all your traffic to go to one site rather than redirect to different URLs like http://mobile.mywebsite.com. So go for responsive rather than a mobile redirect.

My site is actually mobile responsive using Dudamobile but I plan on redesigning my site to be responsive this year.
 

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About 40% of my hits come from mobile or tablet. The best way to answer your question is to know your users. What are you using for analytics to find out which devices your users are using to find you? Check out my responsive site...
http://loghomefinishing.com
 

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Mobile crucial

Mobile is crucial. Have you started using something like Google analytics to determine how many visitor are coming to you on mobile? It's probably at least 30%!
 

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I recommend that you dont go with a responsive design and jump to a mobile site built on its own domain (m yoursite.com). Its only my assumption / guess but I feel responsive will be a fad that will maybe last until the end of the year before the mobile optimized web designs take over. A lot of large corporations are already doing it. Responsive designs still load all the content from the desktop site which depending on what that content is can still cause the site to load slow and be hard to navigate.

Mobile designs remove the pinch and zoom, make it easier to navigate and load faster. You will get people on both sides of the argument so go with whatever you want to and know that there really isnt a wrong decision to be made.
 

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I recommend that you dont go with a responsive design and jump to a mobile site built on its own domain (m yoursite.com). Its only my assumption / guess but I feel responsive will be a fad that will maybe last until the end of the year before the mobile optimized web designs take over. A lot of large corporations are already doing it. Responsive designs still load all the content from the desktop site which depending on what that content is can still cause the site to load slow and be hard to navigate.

Mobile designs remove the pinch and zoom, make it easier to navigate and load faster. You will get people on both sides of the argument so go with whatever you want to and know that there really isnt a wrong decision to be made.
Huh? That reminds me of a blog post shared on a design pros discussion touting all the reasons not to use responsive design. The blog author received some well deserved critiques of his lame reasoning and misunderstanding of what responsive design really is.

I'm not seeking an argument but I can't let inaccurate information go unchallenged because the members here are contractors, not web people, and they need to be given reliable answers.

First of all, a separate mobile site gives you two sites to maintain instead of one. It doubles your maintenance, increases the risk of error, and introduces duplicate content which can weaken your site and ranking.

The statement that it loads all the same content as a desktop page is more a lack of proper planning than a truth. Good responsive design includes deciding when and if some elements of a page should load on smaller device screens. I assure you, well implemented responsive design will also eliminate the need to pinch and zoom.

Arguments against responsive design are the result of poor implementation of it, not because responsive design is bad. Responsive design may very well be a fad. The fad will pass as soon as people stop using devices to access the Internet.
 

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Huh? That reminds me of a blog post shared on a design pros discussion touting all the reasons not to use responsive design. The blog author received some well deserved critiques of his lame reasoning and misunderstanding of what responsive design really is.

I'm not seeking an argument but I can't let inaccurate information go unchallenged because the members here are contractors, not web people, and they need to be given reliable answers.

First of all, a separate mobile site gives you two sites to maintain instead of one. It doubles your maintenance, increases the risk of error, and introduces duplicate content which can weaken your site and ranking.

The statement that it loads all the same content as a desktop page is more a lack of proper planning than a truth. Good responsive design includes deciding when and if some elements of a page should load on smaller device screens. I assure you, well implemented responsive design will also eliminate the need to pinch and zoom.

Arguments against responsive design are the result of poor implementation of it, not because responsive design is bad. Responsive design may very well be a fad. The fad will pass as soon as people stop using devices to access the Internet.
Honestly I only provided my opinion and I as well am not here to point out other peoples "inaccurate" information on posts. The information I provided I dont believe to be necessarily inaccurate. You can bridge a desktop and mobile site to share the same database. I do it on every mobile design we create. Theres a little redesign / re-coding that needs to be done here or there but I have never had to maintain a desktop and mobile site separately.

My opinion is still that responsive design will be replaced by a mobile optimized website. Predictions are that more people will access the internet with their smartphone or tablet than a desktop computer by the end of the year. If thats true then I feel that anybody reading the forum should know the flipside to responsive.

Again I dont think either one is a wrong choice. My argument against it isnt based on poor implementation. Its based on what I experience and what I think may be needed / wanted in the future. My only question is if dedicated mobile is so much worse than responsive why again wouldnt large companies and online retailers stick with responsive and not have a mobile dedicated website?
 

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Honestly I only provided my opinion and I as well am not here to point out other peoples "inaccurate" information on posts. The information I provided I dont believe to be necessarily inaccurate. You can bridge a desktop and mobile site to share the same database. I do it on every mobile design we create. Theres a little redesign / re-coding that needs to be done here or there but I have never had to maintain a desktop and mobile site separately.

My opinion is still that responsive design will be replaced by a mobile optimized website. Predictions are that more people will access the internet with their smartphone or tablet than a desktop computer by the end of the year. If thats true then I feel that anybody reading the forum should know the flipside to responsive.

Again I dont think either one is a wrong choice. My argument against it isnt based on poor implementation. Its based on what I experience and what I think may be needed / wanted in the future. My only question is if dedicated mobile is so much worse than responsive why again wouldnt large companies and online retailers stick with responsive and not have a mobile dedicated website?
I'm glad you clarified that. A database driven site would certainly make a difference in maintenance.

I expect the predictions of mobile surpassing desktop this year are pretty much guaranteed. We're already near the tipping point since it's very close to 50/50 now. There is one variable I believe will influence the numbers and contractors will most likely be in that variable. Some types of web surfing may still get desktop (or at least larger screen) preference. It's one thing to order a pizza on a device, it's another to shop for a home improvement project.

Contractors for sure need to be mobile friendly, especially when potential customers are at buying stage, but during the discovery process, accessing the site with a larger screen seems more preferable.
 

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Mobile First

Sounds like you guys are on the right track. I like the comment about mobile devises replacing desktop as we are already past that point and don't even have to wait until the end of the year. Regardless if it's responsive, or a separate mobile site, you are on the right track of thinking 'Mobile First'.

As a log home contractor in Colorado, most of my clients log homes are second homes where they don't have desktop computers and land line internet. My customers do use their i-phones to find me the most as they bring this along with their cellular connection to their second home.
 

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most of my clients log homes are second homes where they don't have desktop computers and land line internet. My customers do use their i-phones to find me the most as they bring this along with their cellular connection to their second home.
I think LogHome's response has answered your question better than any one of us could. His personal situation requires a mobile site. Does yours?
 

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Looking at the way society is going mobile is a good route to take. Now with the way mobile phones are going a true mobile web site might not be necessary. Some of these mobile phones are like tablets and they can display pages pretty darn good. I know my page displayed pretty well on my iPhone 4. I do now have a mobile site and it's not as pretty as the real site.
 

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@Gastek:

Do you know Richard Glueck of Solar Energy Systems and Service? I installed more solar pool heaters with that guy than I can track. I finally quit when we were on a dark metal roof in Sarasota and it was so hot my shoes were melting...
 
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