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What Is Responsive Web Design?
Responsive Web Design

Written by EssexMarketing

Essex Marketing is the leader in digital marketing services across the Essex Region. We love to help clients maximize their potential and increase their sales and online presence.
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Defining what a responsive web design is:

A responsive web design is referred to as a web development approach that helps to create dynamic changes to the website’s appearance, depending upon the orientation and screen size of the device being used to view it. Responsive web designing is an approach to designing for limited devices available to customers, ranging from desktop monitors to mini phones.

In a responsive web design, breakpoints help to determine the appearance of the layout of a website. Web designers use one design above the breakpoint, and another one is used below the breakpoint. The browser’s width decides the breakpoints.

Using CSS (that determines the website’s layout), similar HTML is served to every device to transform the page’s appearance. Instead of creating a corresponding codebase and district website for monitors with a wide-screen, laptops, phones, tablets and desktops of all sizes, you can simply use a codebase that will support all users with differently sized viewpoints.

When it comes to responsive web design, the page’s elements reshuffle as soon as the viewpoint shrinks or grows; in this, a desktop design containing three columns reshuffles to two when the viewpoint changes to a tablet and a single column for smartphones. A responsive web design relies heavily on grids that are proportion-based to rearrange design and content elements.

Responsive web design emerged as a way to give equal information access regardless of the device. It’s also possible for you to hide specific items such as the background images on smaller screens. Decisions about functionality, altering appearance or hiding content for various device types need to be based on the knowledge you have about your users and their requirements.

Responsive web design as many advantages as compared to creating different websites for various types of devices. Using a single codebase can help to make development quicker as compared to developing more than 2 websites. Maintaining a single website is much easier as you only need one codebase and you will only have to update the content on one website rather than 3 or 4. Responsive web design is also better for the future because it can support the latest breakpoints at any time. If a device is 15 inches or 5 inches and it’s a newly arrived device in the market, the code will support the latest devices as well.

The Boston Globe also uses responsive design, and they are known for it. The desktop version has three columns, while the design changes to two columns on a tablet and one column on mobile. It’s usually easier to implement a responsive web design on a content-based website rather than a functionality-based one because the elements need to have the ability to shuffle and resize. Interactions or complex data can be difficult to fit into modular pieces that can easily shuffle around a page while preserving functionality and clarity.

Creates Usable Experiences:

Responsive web design heavily relies on shuffling elements around a page. That’s why development and design have to work together closely to ensure a usable experience across all devices. Responsive design is more like solving a puzzle in which you need to know how to reorganise your elements on larger pages to fit longer or skinnier pages. However, it’s not enough to ensure that the elements fit inside a page. To have a successful, responsive web design, the design needs to be usable at all sizes and screen resolutions.

When you move elements around a page, user experience can differ from one website’s viewpoint to another. The development teams and the design must work together to determine how to shuffle around the content and discover the end result of that shift and how it will affect users’ experience.

Development teams look at popular responsive-design frameworks like bootstrap to create designs. To move along development, such designs are helpful. However, you need to know how the framework will work alongside your website’s functionality and content.

We recommend that you always conduct usability tests on designs. We recommend that you test responsive web designs across platforms. It’s already tricky to design a site that’s usable on desktop computers. It’s even trickier to design a site that’s usable in many configurations or rearrangements of its elements across multiple orientations and screen sizes. The same way that a designer works smoothly on a smartphone might work horribly on a desktop and vice versa.

Focus on Content:

The primary aspect of creating a successful web design is prioritising content. More content is visible on a large desktop screen without scrolling up and down. If the users do not instantly see what they want on a large screen, they will glance around easily to discover the page. While using a smartphone, the users will have to scroll to see the content they wanted. Prioritising content smartly helps users to find their content of interest efficiently.

Consider Performance:

Performance can be a problem with responsive design. RWD delivers one codebase to every device, regardless of whether the code applied to that design or not. Changes in the design occur on the client’s side, meaning every device receives a full code for all devices, and it takes what it needs.

A 24-inch desktop screen will receive a similar code as a 4-inch smartphone. That can not down the performance on a desktop screen, relying on s spottier and slower data connection.

To test your responsive design’s user experience, don’t only test it in the comfort of your office, using a high-speed internet connection. Go out into the city with your smartphone. Take it between short and tall buildings, basements, interior conference rooms and remote areas having a spotty internet connection. Then see how well or poor your site performs. A responsive web design aims to provide equal access to information to all users with varying devices. If the download times are intolerable, the user with a smartphone won’t have the same experience as a desktop screen.

A responsive web design is a tool and not a cure for everything. Using a responsive web design has its perks while designing for all devices but using this technique won’t guarantee a usable experience. Teams need to focus on the performance, the performance and the details of the content so that the design can support all users with any device.

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