Responsive web design allows a site’s layout to adjust to a device’s screen size. A wide screen display can show multiple columns of content while a small screen can have that same content presented in a single column with text and images that are appropriately sized to be read and used on that smaller screen.
Why is responsive web design the most important aspect for a website?
Here are 5 key reasons:
1. Supporting the Multi-Device User
We live in a world where websites are visited by a variety of different devices with varied screen sizes. Customers are returning to these sites at different times using their different devices. Our sites must work well regardless of which device they’re being viewed on. The same content that they have access to on one device must be present when they return on other device to ensure consistency.
By ensuring navigational consistency across all devices, you’re supporting your customers and do not give them any reason to abandon your site halfway through their overall web-user experience.
2. One Consistent Website
It’s hard enough to keep one website current and relevant. Trying to keep a mobile site and your regular site up-to-date is even more of a challenge. A responsive website is much preferred over separate websites for desktop displays and mobile devices.
Mobile sites detect whether or not a visitor is using a mobile device and, if so, send them to a separate, mobile-optimized version of the site. Dezine Werx does not recommend mobile sites for a few reasons:
• Two sites have to be updated – double the workload
• Mobile sites offer a watered down version of the main site’s content – no consistency
• Visual differences - your company website branding is affected with 2 different looks and URLs.
3. Search Engine Rankings with Google
With the largest search market share, when Google speaks, search marketers listen. Google strongly recommends using responsive web design to support different devices and screen sizes. Google uses mobile-friendliness to rank websites better and penalizes those that are not, making responsive web design an important element in SEO strategy plans!
4. Future Scalability
The responsive website approach gives you the best chance to support newer devices and screens in the future. Responsive sites scale up or down as needed to best fit the screens being used to access the site. As new devices enter the market with varied screen sizes, responsive websites will be prepared to meet those new devices with a design and experience best suited to any screen sizes that is manufactured.
Every website, regardless of it’s goals or audience, will benefit from a display that works great across different screen sizes and on various devices. Responsive web design is a feature and should be a priority on all website projects.