At some point in the past, you’ve probably encountered opening a non-responsive website on your phone or tablet wherein you needed to zoom in on every image and text just to see better and make sure you’re headed to the right page.
Wasn’t that experience dreadful? And didn’t it make you want to abandon that site right away?
In today’s modern world, where an increasing number of people use their phones to shop online or research a product or service, having a responsive web design is a must for your business!
A responsive web design is a key to elevating user experience, boosting your conversions, and reducing your bounce rates for better ranking.
But what exactly is a responsive web design? What does it look like? And how does it work?
In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about responsive web design, from its definition to the tips and tricks of making a mobile-friendly and responsive website.
Without further ado, let’s get started!
What is a Responsive Web Design?
A responsive website design automatically adapts to the kind of device, screen size, and platform your visitors are using. It ensures that users will have the same branded experience accessing your site from their mobile devices as they would if they accessed it from their desktop computers.
In other words, a responsive website automatically shrinks when viewed on mobile and will automatically expand on the desktop. A non-responsive website, on the other hand, ignores the user’s viewport dimensions.
Why Responsive Design Matters
This means that there’s a huge possibility that most of your web visitors are mobile users. And you can’t serve them a page designed for desktop because it would be hard to use and read, which will ultimately lead to a bad user experience.
Aside from the fact that most people use their phones to access the web to shop or research about a product or service, another reason why having a responsive web design is incredibly important is that mobile has become one of the most crucial advertising channels to date.
In fact, even in a post-pandemic world, mobile ad spending is predicted to reach $ 341.18 billion this year.
If your landing pages aren’t optimized for mobile, expect to get fewer conversions, fewer leads, and fewer sales in general. Optimizing for mobile is the way to maximize your ROI from your digital marketing efforts.
Responsive Web Design Pros and Cons
- Easier for users to access and navigate your site across various devices
- Simple and cheaper to maintain and develop
- Boosts your SEO ranking since Google prioritizes responsive websites over those that aren’t
- Analytics are easier to monitor
- Lowers bounce rates
- Increases conversion rates
- Converting an existing site into a responsive one is time-consuming
- Some of your content might also end up not getting fully optimized for mobile. It’s best to use a mobile-first method
- Some experience limited usability issues compared to the different tasks that can be done when accessed from a desktop computer
Three Main Elements of a Responsive Web Design
Essentially, a responsive web design has three main elements:
1. Adaptable Grid
Grid, in graphic design, is a framework that consists of a series of intersecting lines used to structure content. It is where web designers organize graphic elements in a realistic manner.
Adaptable grids are an essential part of modern responsive design because they’re made to support fluid layouts. Using an adaptable grid allows for a flexible and scalable design. Its elements will automatically adjust to different viewports based on percentages and will have consistent proportion and spacing.
2. Media Queries
Media query is a CSS technique that allows you to show content based on different factors, such as screen size or resolution. It works similarly to an “if clause” in some programming languages. Basically, it checks a screen’s viewport width first before executing the suitable code to make sure your content renders perfectly on the device of the viewer.
3. Flexible Images and Text
You have to make sure that your text and images are clear and highly readable no matter what device it’s being viewed on, which is why it’s important to opt for flexible images and text.
Flexible images and text automatically adjust as directed by the content hierarchy established in the CSS.
Text can increase in font size for smaller screens and images can disappear, scale, shrink, or crop, depending on what you program to be important to the mobile experience.
Responsive Web Design Tips and Tricks
Below are some of the most important tips and tricks that we think are essential when building a responsive web design for your business:
Study How Your Visitors Navigate Via Mobile
Web visitors will go through your site differently on mobile than on desktop computers. So, consider using a heatmap, survey, and analytics to understand where users click, what they do on different pages, how far they scroll, and where they usually stop before exiting your website.
This will give you an idea of what should readily be available on smaller screens and what the layout of your website should be on mobile.
Plan Your Design
Before coming up with a design, you must plan its layout first. Visualize how you want your website to look and feel before you move on to the coding part. Doing this will make it easier for you or your web designer to customize a design and integrate your brand into it.
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Create Several Prototypes
To make sure your website renders well across different devices, you should consider making several prototypes and testing them out on different screen sizes.
Here are a few tools that you can use for prototypes:
Keep Your Navigation Simple but Not Hidden
Navigation is incredibly important because it allows visitors to access other pages on your site easily. Usually, when viewed on a desktop computer, your navigation will have visible links to important pages on your site. But the typical practice for mobile devices is to use an icon and hide the links behind it.
Unfortunately, some users may not realize that they need to click on the icon to show the menu. This can leave them frustrated and cause them to exit your site right away. What you should do instead is to leave the most important menu items apparent on mobile and then using the hamburger menu design for the rest of the links.
The right images allow you to make an emotional connection with your visitors. It also enables them to visualize themselves using your products or services. So, you need to make sure that your images are high-quality, loads fast on mobile, and are optimized for SEO.
Get Ahead of Your Competitors by Using a Responsive Web Design
Having a responsive website is no longer an option for businesses that want to thrive in this modern era. A responsive web design makes it easier for visitors to access your site no matter what device they’re using. It also helps increase your online visibility by improving your conversion rate and bounce rate, which significantly influences your ranking in search engine results pages.
Take your business to the next level by using a responsive web design for your business website!
Want to know more about how to create a responsive web design for your business? You’re in the right place! At Brenkoweb, we offer online articles, tutorials, and code editors you can use to learn more about web development and programming.