What is Responsive Web Design?

So if your here, you’ve heard the term but aren’t quite sure exactly what it means and why it’s important to you. Responsive web design (RWD) is an approach to web design aimed at crafting sites to provide an optimal viewing experience (easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling) across a wide range of devices (from desktop computer monitors to mobile phones).

Doesn’t that sound nice?

It is nice and awesome at the same time. So why is this important for your business?

Because your users expect this now and when presented with anything else, they get a bad taste in their mouth and outright leave. Why should I have to pinch and expand to try and view what I’m looking for? Know-one wants to fight with a website to view it’s content comfortably. You should provide me with optimal viewing on all my devices. 2015 is here and it’s the year for responsive web design. All websites should be migrating to responsive and with an increasing user demand for it you will see just that happening.

The way we used to try and display a site optimally on all devices was to detect which device was viewing it and then spit out specific code for that device. Can you imagine how difficult this is? It was fine in the beginning when there wasn’t that many devices to design for, but nowadays it’s impossible to do this because of the multitude of brands and sizes. Responsive doesn’t detect the device at all really. It detects the size of the browser instead which means it doesn’t care what you are viewing it on but what resolution you are viewing it on instead. Ah..now we’re talking. Now we only have to design for a certain number of display resolutions (breakpoints we call them) and it will show nicely on every device. You can literally drag the corner of your browser and shrink the page smaller and see the website resizing in real time. You can try this right now with this website if you want. It’s really cool and very friendly to the user.

We obviously love responsive web design and how it helps with the user experience. I’m sure we’ll be talking quite a lot about it this year so stay tuned for more on the subject.

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