Caregiving MetroWest unveils upgrade to responsive design to enhance site experience for smartphone and tablet users
Since our launch more than two years ago, we have striven to continue to improve and enhance the information provided and the experience enjoyed by the visitors who come to CaregivingMetroWest.org.
We have just introduced one of our biggest improvements, upgrading the site to a “Responsive Design” that allows smartphone, tablet, laptop, and desktop users to all experience the same access to comprehensive caregiver resources, information and support.
Previously, mobile device users accessed a limited version of the website. While the majority of the content was available to mobile users, interactive features such as the clickable map
for caregiving resource listings in each of our 25 MetroWest communities and Caregiving Concierge
, a tool designed to guide users to the information and resources on the site that would be most useful to their specific situation, were not able to be displayed on mobile devices. The resource lists, both by town and by type, were accessible on mobile devices, as were all the content pages in the InfoCenter, but they were not optimized for viewing on smaller mobile devices and those limitations were reflected in the relative lack of engagement from our mobile users compared to visitors accessing the site through laptop or desktop computers.
With more and more of our visitors accessing the site through smartphones and tablets, that was a problem we were eager to rectify.
In the site’s first year, 76 percent of the traffic came via desktops and laptops, compared to just 24 percent through mobile devices. In Year 2, those numbers were nearly equal with 51 percent of traffic coming from desktops and laptops and 49% via smartphones and tablets.
CaregivingMetroWest.org’s increasing mobile traffic is reflective of a larger trend, as more and more people are using mobile devices to access information online. The Pew Research Center’s study, “U.S. Smartphone Use in 2015,” found that “64% of American adults now own a smartphone, up from 35% in the spring of 2011.” Pew also found that 19% of American adults are “smartphone dependent” for internet access, either not having any other form of high-speed internet access at home or having only limited options to get online other than their cell phone.
Based on these findings, we applied to the MetroWest Health Foundation for a grant to fund an upgrade to a responsive design. The Foundation awarded BayPath Elder Services, Inc. the grant to upgrade Caregiving MetroWest this spring and with the help of Artifex Technology Consulting, Inc., we are proud to announce the re-design is complete.
Desktop and laptop users should see few if any differences when they visit the site, but anyone who had previously accessed the site only on a smartphone or tablet should be in for quite a treat as they will now be able to see and use the entire site and all of its features the same as desktop users.
With the responsive design, all users will now experience the same site, with the content and images automatically resizing to fit the size of the screen of the device accessing the site. For example, content that is displayed in multiple columns on a desktop will automatically reformat to a single column on a smartphone, so that the user does not have to scan side to side or shrink the type size to see it all.
We hope that this will improve the experience for mobile device users, making it more likely for them to stay on the site longer and get more of the information and resources they need. So try it out, and feel free to let us know
what you think of the upgrades and what else we might be able to improve in the future to aid you in the care of your loved ones.