Responsive Web Design

The advent of smartphone technology initially troubled most web designers. In the old days, you only needed to worry about browser compatibility. These days, you now need to factor in screen resolutions as mobile phones all have different ones. Likewise, there are tablets and even phablets joining in. Moving forward, we are also going to expect more and more variations to come. With all these possibilities, what’s a web designer to do?

The answer is Responsive Design. This refers to a web design approach which hints that development and design should respond to the user’s environment. Jeffrey Veen, one of the leading experts on web design, has been quoted as saying, “Responsive web design represents a fundamental shift in how we’ll build websites for the decade to come.”

True enough, responsive web design has definitely lived up to its name. When you follow this approach, the user’s platform, screen size and orientation will all be taken into consideration when presenting the web pages. Here are all the benefits of responsive web design elaborated:

  • Stick to one URL
    If you are familiar with SEO, you’d understand that optimizing one site is better and a lot cheaper. With a responsive site, you don’t need to create a mobile alternative such as m.domain.com or mobile.domain.com. Your URL remains the same and the display simply changes on mobile sites. For SEO purposes, you can still optimize this URL and rank well for both desktop and mobile sites.
  • Humans love responsive sites
    Websites that appear on top may have an advantage when it comes to traffic but that doesn’t mean they can keep it. What we’re pointing out actually is something referred to as bounce rate. If your site is responsive, people are more likely to stay there. People who land on sites that look distorted, on the other hand, leave just as quickly as they got there.
  • Offline browsing
    Since responsive web design relies heavily on HTML5, users now have the capability to view pages on the go, even without any internet connection. This is actually an added bonus for consumers and will make them keep coming back to your site.
  • Google advocates responsive
    Google’s recommended configuration for smart phones is responsive web design. They even explain it here.  Basically, this means that any search queries made on mobile devices will return results with mobile-optimized sites given more favor.

Start building your responsive website now, if you haven’t done it yet. You may also want to have a look at our great web design tips.