Mopdoglopedia: Responsive Web Design

What is Responsive Web Design?

Simply put, responsive web design is designing a web page that will scale to fit each device it is displayed on.

Starbucks Coffee Company is a great example of a responsive website. The following images show the site’s scaling properties per device.

In the image above you can see that the layout and information presented changes depending on the device that is being used. Looking at the image on the right you can see that the most information is presented on a standard monitor. The second device represents a tablet, such as an iPad or a Kindle Fire. If you look closely you can see that the top navigation has become a dropdown menu in order to preserve some screen real-estate. The sidebar images have also been moved below the featured quote. The image on the left represents a smartphone such as an iPhone or Android. The information presented has mostly been honed down to the text elements.

Why is it Important?

Your users will be happy. Websites are all about catering to consumers. User-friendly functionality is the number one goal. That means creating a website requires the developer to consider any platform the consumer may be accessing from. With the constant creation of new technology, phone upgrades and tablets, website flexibility is increasingly important.

Responsive design is progressive. When it comes to website design responsive design isn’t just a trend or a fad. This type of design is allowing businesses to stay relevant and to move forward with technology by having a website that does the same.

It saves money and time. There is no more building a site for computer users, a separate site for phone users and a third for tablet users. Responsive design is a one site fits all. Build it once and it’s done.

Let us Explain.

You are trying to pick a restaurant for dinner, but you’re on the couch, the computer is all the way in the office upstairs and all you have is your phone. You want to know what the menu offers and where the place is. When you pull a responsive restaurant site up on your phone there is no more scrolling to the left, zooming in and out or clicking the wrong link because your fingers are too big. The site is scaled to screen size and the information is laid out clean and easy to use.

Food for Thought.

“17% of cell phone owners do most of their online browsing on their phone, rather than a computer or other device. Most do so for convenience, but for some their phone is their only option for online access.”
– Pew Internet & American Life Project



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