Responsive Documents: the Best Idea You Shouldn't Use?
Learn about responsive web design and the challenges facing companies looking to make their annual reports, 10-Ks, and proxy statements responsive.
"Responsive" is the term used to indicate that a web page can respond to the size of the screen of the viewer. Then it can adjust so what the user reads on a small screen (like a smartphone) is formatted to make their experience easy. Websites created before the rise of smartphones and tablets were designed in a way that doesn't respond to the new screen sizes and requires that users "pinch and zoom" to read content.
Because of the massive install base and use of smartphones and tablets, companies are rapidly upgrading their websites to be responsive. In our current study we found that 68% of the S&P 500 have already upgraded their website to be responsive. This is especially telling considering the effort required to go to full responsive is very considerable.
But companies face new challenges when applying responsive design to online documents. The largest hurdle is how to properly display large tables, which are mainstays in annual reports, 10-Ks, and proxy statements. The data is far too wide to be readable on smartphones and if scrolling is added, it becomes cumbersome to be able to read the table itself. There are only two companies in the S&P 500 who created a fully responsive version of their annual report! Microsoft Corporation and Eaton Corp. Plc created stunning, fully responsive documents that even show tables on smartphones.
Because of this challenge with tables, a strategy of "partial responsive" is already catching on. In this strategy, the introductory pages (the annual report intro/summary/year in review/glossy section or the proxy summary) are done in full responsive while the remainder of the document is in a non-responsive format. We see this strategy gaining steam in the next few years to respond to the rise of mobile users while not committing to the intense cost of a full responsive report.
When making decisions on how to convert documents, there are key features to consider.
- PDF, as a technology, is not responsive and also not SEC compliant on stock Apple products because the built-in PDF reader doesn't allow full-text searching or bookmarks!
- Tiles Navigation is a method of adding a branded visual table of contents that is touch-friendly, at a much lower price point than partial or full responsive
EZOnlineDocuments offers a suite of products starting with Interactive all the way up to full responsive. Contact us today and let us help you make the correct price and value decisions for your conversions!