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Why all the hubbub about a responsive web design? With the dramatic increase of smartphones and tablets in the past couple of years, the number of people accessing websites via their mobile device is steadily increasing.
So much so that we now need to start taking into consideration the experience that users are having on your website.
Let’s say you’re out and about and you want to quickly look something up on your smart phone. Say your looking to make a reservation at a restaurant or you want to find out what time the store you want to go to closes.
Chances are if you’re on your smart phone, you’re not looking to spend too much time reading about the company’s history and mission statement.
You just want to find the information you need quickly and be done with it.
Most websites do not conform to smaller devices such as smart phones and tablets, which means you’re usually stuck trying to navigate around a website where the text is too tiny to read and you would need a tooth pick to actually hit all those darn tiny menu buttons. I don’t know about y’all, but I get pretty frustrated when all I’m trying to do is find a phone number or shop hours. So what’s the solution?
Making a website responsive is the act of insuring that your websites content is eligible and best optimized for the screen size it is being viewed on. This doesn’t mean that you have a mobile specific version of your website, but that your site automatically scales and re-arranges content depending on what size screen it’s being viewed on.
The trend has been to create versions of your website that come into effect when being viewed on a “specific device” (ie. iPhone, iPad, Samsung Galaxy, Droid). This is all well and good, but the number of devices out there is alarming, and there are new models coming out every month. This means your website needs to be constantly updated to suit the latest device and in turn cost you more and more money to do so.
A truly responsive website doesn’t care what it’s being viewed on.
It conforms to all screen sizes, paired with strategically placed content allows for a pleasant user experience.
(adjust the size of your browser window to see how these website react to different screen sizes.).