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What is Responsive Website Design?

You might have heard the terms 'Responsive Web Design' or 'Mobile-friendly website' before, but what are these types of website and why should your website incorporate their features?

What is a responsive website?

The term 'Responsive web design' was originally coined by web designer Ethan Marcotte in 2010 and he believed "Responsive web design offers us a way forward, finally allowing us to design for the ebb and flow of things", responsive web design refers to a website being able to instinctively modify itself to suit different viewing devices.

This is a website which is adaptable to any screen size and format, so its easy to use on a desktop, laptop, tablet or mobile phone. By the website being able to automatically adapt to suit all devices allows it to look great no matter where its being viewed.

A standard website is made of a set of files (each page, so home page, about page, contact us page etc. which are all individual files). Each of these files contains its own HTML code and content (text and images), web pages are then styled with files called cascading style sheets or CSS. So to put it more simply, a typical website is made up of various files, with some CSS files that control the look of the website. A responsive website applies an alternate set of CSS files depending on the device that is accessing the website, therefore the website responds differently depending on the viewing device.

So on a responsive website, a user viewing the site from a desktop screen would see a horizontally aligned navigation menu, whereas someone viewing the site from a mobile device or a tablet would see a vertically aligned navigation menu with differently formatted text, allowing for easier viewing and reading on a smaller and differently shaped screen.

Why is having a responsive web design important for your business?

  • Increase reach to customers on smaller devices (e.g. mobile phones and tablets)

  • A consistent experience that can increase lead generation, sales and conversions

  • Analytics, tracking, and reporting can all be in one place

  • Time for on-site content management is decreased

  • Increase the SEO ranking of your website as mobile-friendly websites rank higher

  • Over 60% of search engine traffic is from mobile devices

  • A responsive website provides a better user experience, leaving your customers with a better impression of your business

Why is a responsive website better than just a mobile-friendly website?

Having a mobile friendly website is great as according to Google 60% of people won't stay on your website if it isn't mobile friendly, and 67% of people are more likely to buy from a mobile friendly site, so Google ranks mobile-friendly websites higher in search engine results. However, a high-quality and high-ranking website requires more, yes a mobile-friendly website will look great on a desktop and a mobile phone, but what if your target audience views your website on a tablet or a smaller laptop? There's no guarantee your website is going to look great on these types of devices. Which is something that a responsive website combats.

  • Responsive websites are viewer friendly on every device, not just mobile phones. On a responsive website all pages are available meaning your audience can always view and enjoy all content

  • Responsive websites load faster, saving your audiences time and encouraging people to stay on your website, as Google's research states that around 40% of users leave a website if it doesn't load in less than 3 seconds

  • One responsive website is more effective and simpler than having separate versions of your website for desktops and mobile phones, allowing you to save time and makes search engine optimisation more consistent and effective

To conclude, having a responsive website isn't just an option anymore, it's a requirement for a successful website that ranks highly on search engines.

So stay ahead of your competitors and improve your businesses online portfolio now with one of our expertly designed, created and managed responsive websites, our specialist web developers are always on hand to ensure your businesses website is reaching its full potential online.

Contact us to find out more about how we can help your business:

01782 497 244



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