Years ago, websites had both a desktop and mobile version, two separate and different versions of a website to cater to a user’s device. Some still do and for good reason, but for a majority of websites on the Internet, a responsive design is a necessary one.
A website that is built responsively is one website that is viewable on all mobile devices provided that the browser and operating system are still being supported and updated. That means that all of the great content that you have on a desktop site will essentially “respond” to the device screen size that a user is viewing it on which is a major boost for search engine rankings.
That doesn’t mean that the website is going to look exactly the same and it shouldn’t. Mobile users interact with a website differently than desktop users, so a mobile layout should be structured to the user’s habits and needs.
Theoretically, with the amount of devices owned in the world, everyone, and we mean everyone, has more than one mobile device, so why ignore that? The search engines sure aren’t. Google is penalizing websites that aren’t mobile-friendly which will result in a drop in search engine rankings. In the end, with current mobile trends, not having a mobile-friendly website is simply offering a bad user experience to potential customers and no amount of search engine rankings and marketing can help that.
All websites should be mobile-friendly but responsive isn’t the only option, find out what other options you have.