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Responsive Web Design – What is it?

Responsive Web Design

Technology has changed the way users browse the web. Mobile phone owners want to access the net using their phones, gadget users want to browse the web using their devices. Users expectations have changed because technology never stops evolving. Site owners now scramble to make their pages suitable for mobile browsing because 800 million people now use their gadgets to browse the web. As web browsing jumps into mobile phones and gadgets from the traditional desktops, a new norm in designing websites comes to life – Responsive web design.

What is Responsive Web Design?

Responsive web design is the approach that suggests that design and development of websites should respond to the user’s browsing behaviour and preferred tools to access the Internet.  Is the user accessing the site using a tablet or a smartphone? What is the screen size and orientation of the gadget? Responsive web design assures web owners that their sites are compatible with multiple devices.

Responsive web design allows a website to adapt itself to multiple screen sizes, making it look good on a smartphone, a tablet, an e-reader, and not just the desktop. Websites designed using the responsive web design method feature the following:

• Flexible Orientation
The website automatically shrinks or expands to fit the screen, whether it be tilted horizontally or vertically.

• Flexible Imaging
Website photos and images automatically changes size depending on the screen, platform, or orientation

• Flexible Screen Resolutions
Website resolution remains of high quality in any device – phone, tablet, etc.

Benefits of Responsive Web Design

Mobile users looking for the best restaurant or the most reliable removal company do not care about how pretty a website looks like. Mobile Internet users, all 800 million of them according to ComSource 2012 survey, want direct information on menus, operating hours, prices, and other essential information. Responsive web design offers the following benefits:

• Saves Money
Websites are designed using only one code that will be compatible with any platform, system, and device, thus reducing your design and programming cost.

• Saves Time
Only one design for all devices means you spend a little time with your design team and more on your business. No more flowery front page introductions, lengthy marketing spiels, or boring video presentations.

• Maximises compatibility
Majority of the beautiful websites designed for desktops can become ordinary and unappealing when accessed through a mobile device. With responsive web design, websites look great on any device.

• Improves SEO
Search engines use different algorithms in displaying results from queries done using mobile devices. Responsive web design affords websites the chance to be listed on mobile search engine results

• Better performance
Mobile browsers are people on the go. They want to access information using their devices as quick as possible. Responsive web design presents an optimal experience for all users regardless of whether they’re using a phone, tablet, computer, or other devices.

• Beats competition
A recent study showed that mobile users prefer companies and shops with websites that can be accessed using their gadgets and devices. Customer retention and loyalty also increase for businesses that have mobile websites

• Google recommended
Yes, responsive web design is highly-recommended by Google to webmasters!

Responsive web design makes businesses ready for the future. According to a TechCrunch 2012 Survey, mobile devices will overtake desktop PCs as dominant global internet platform this year and mobile internet users will hit 1.9 billion in 2015. If your site is not ready for the future, you should start to panic by now.

The Future of the Web

Responsive web design is the future of the Internet. It is all about automatically and quickly delivering to your visitors the content they want using the gadgets they prefer. If your website is still not mobile responsive, here are some figures that could make you decide to take that big switch:

• Responsive web design uses CSS3 media queries supported by all mobile browsers – Safari, Opera Mini, Android, Symbian, etc.

• More than 1 billion people around the world now own at least one smartphone.

• According to a Google 2012 Survey, 75% of customers prefer a mobile-friendly website

• The same Google survey showed that 79% of mobile phone owners use their gadgets to visit online shopping sites and 74% actually make a purchase as a result

• Some 61% of customers who visit a mobile-incompatible website are likely to go to a competitor’s site, says the Interactive Advertising Bureau

We hope this article helps to explain a little more about responsive web design and the benefits of responsiveness with mobile devices. Upper Case creates responsive web design and mobile websites for local business owners in Ireland.

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