Responsive Web Design – What is it?
Living in the era of internet represents an almost uncountable amount of advantages, and as technology is constantly evolving, new ways to access the net are going to keep appearing. This evolution of technology includes new devices that will allow us to search for whatever we need no matter where we are as long as our data provider signal reaches us.
Nevertheless, every coin has two sides, which means anything that could ease visitor experience is probably giving some web designers some sort of headache. Most of time, designers take a time of designing an entire website that suits the device from which is being visited and take the risk of being labeled as content duplication.
Fortunately, Responsive Web Design exists. This kind of design, also known as adaptive web design, employs a series of stylesheets in CSS3 and media queries that transform a normal website in one able to adapt to any platform and every existent size. This is an improvement for visitors that use various platforms, because they no longer have to zoom in and scroll uncomfortably on websites designed for desktop devices while browsing on a tablet or a smartphone.
But, “is it really necessary to change a website in order to make it responsive?” Even when it’s not actually necessary, fellow designer, responsive web design comes with some advantages that will wake your interest up, such as:
- Maintenance and development get cheaper and easier: You are using the same template for all your platforms, the smallest change in one of them will also be seen in the other, so the costs of development and maintenance go low.
- No more duplicates: Having a mobile version of your website in order to share your content adapted to the device could harm your SEO because that means that your content is duplicated and Google penalized your web. Having a Responsive web instead makes your content adapt to any kind of resolution and size allowed by the device, so there won’t be any duplicates.
- Your visitors will thank you: The opinions of your visitors will get better and better and use it more. This is something you will see on statistics such as rises in the time spent on each visit and the bounce rate between pages that shape your web.
- Virality will go up: Among the 70% of social network browsing is made through mobile devices, meaning that if your content is good enough and enjoyable by the visitors, they will share it on their networks easily.
Responsive web design is not just advantages, though. It requires a greater investment on first development because they’re more difficult to make. Images will load slower because they first adapt to the resolution and size. But don’t worry; there are good people like Foundation 3 and Bootstrap developing preconfigured frameworks so you don’t have to design from scratch.
Make your websites friendlier and start using responsive web design on your projects. The improvements will be almost immediate!