Posts tagged: responsive website design

Why responsive website design should be your first choice

As anyone operating online should know by now, mobile browsing isn’t just the future, it’s already the present. As many experts had predicted a decade ago, the way we browse the web has rapidly evolved thanks to the development of mobile and tablet technology so that today over half of all browsing happens via a mobile phone or tablet device. Knowing this, every business should by now be spending a larger budget on mobile ready website platforms than conventional desktop sites, however research shows this still isn’t the case.

On the plus side, if you’re still yet to develop a mobile platform for you website, you’re not alone, and by starting the project of building a site now, you still have the opportunity to leave so much of your competition behind.

The mobile web
As we’ve explained, in terms of total user traffic, the mobile web now trumps the more traditional desktop based web. If a customer or Google crawler bot enters into your website and finds that it isn’t mobile ready, your overall web rank will suffer. Therefore for the overall health of your website, however it is viewed, it is essential that you’re competing on the mobile web.

“M dot” websites
Simply mirror the design of your existing site on a sub-domain with m. before the normal web address. The main benefit of this is that it maintains the current look and feel of your website but with a smaller format.

Mobile web apps
Mobile web apps mirror how a native app (one that you download and install) looks and feels, but without the need to download. Instead a mobile web app can be reached via the search engine like any other site, but keep in mind the app platform isn’t fit for all purposes.

Responsive design
Responsive website design has become the web developers favourite when it comes to building a mobile platform and is the format that we would most recommend. A responsive site has a dynamic format which can adjust to any given screen size making it effective for desktop, mobile, or tablet browsing.

Responsive Website Design – a how to guide

The first question to ask yourself is this – is your website currently designed using responsive website design? If the answer is “don’t know” then maybe we’re getting ahead of ourselves. First of all make sure that you know exactly what responsive web design is.

A new way of designing for mobile

Essentially this is exactly what responsive design is, a whole new way of building website content, design, and infrastructure to better suit mobile browsing. One of the greatest things about responsive design (besides essentially doubling your potential target audience size) is that it’s very simple for a desktop device to read, whereas a site designed originally for desktop can be a real problem for a mobile device to read. So if you are currently designing your first ever website, perhaps consider designing for mobile first, it may save you time, money, and a lot of hard work.

Small screen size

The main reason for the difference in design between desktop and mobile is the limited and widely varying screen sizes used on mobile and tablet devices. When you access a website which isn’t responsive you will find that images are too large to view, the speed of the site slows dramatically, and content format becomes corrupt.

Your one stop solution to all of this and to give you access to the massive wave of mobile web browsers is to invest in responsive mobile website design, it’s that simple!

Most of the widely used responsive design tools out there focus on using intuitive grid systems to help you design how your web content will look on different screen sizes. Other neat features like more finger friendly buttons and icons are also important. Finally in designing for mobile you will focus on stripping your website back to the necessities, speed is a common problem with mobile browsing and by keeping elements like media to a minimum you can help to speed up your mobile site.

New features of responsive web design to look out for

With the growth of the mobile web we’ve seen fascinating new way of extra responsive web design cropping up, and they’re changing the way we browse the web in a beautiful way. Recent developments are beginning to make the way we browse the web more effective, more responsive, and more beautiful.

It seems like every day some new revolution is making the news, but here are our favourite recent developments in responsive web design, you’ve probably seen some of them already, but might not know much about them.

– Ghost buttons
Ghost buttons are small transparent icons that take replace the buttons you’re more familiar with clicking on. Traditional button icons which you use to move from page to page, or make selections were very solid, and seemed fixed in place. Ghost buttons seem like a layer above the content below, and can blend seamlessly with the background, giving design the foreground, while functionality becomes more discrete.

– Hidden Menus
Very popular now for shopping sites, especially in the fashion industry, but by now popular in pretty much any industry, hidden menus. Again menus were traditionally more solid, now menus can slide or fade in and out of view as you navigate the page. This is great for a few reasons, firstly it allows for far more ease when browsing, not needing to return to a fixed menu, now it comes with you.

Also because the menu hides when you’re not using it, the whole page space can be dedicated to the content, far more focussed. Focus is a trend in design more generally too and is changing the colour of the internet.

– Colour
When the internet was new, it was “cool” to be flashy. Bright colours, text, elaborate font, and a general lack of taste were “in”. Design has recently got much classier though, and more gentle tonal colours help the user to focus on the content, and not the page it’s on.