Nowadays, more people are visiting the web using mobile devices than ever before, and the trend is growing by leaps and bounds. Websites are not only being visited by people using a variety of different devices and screen sizes, but the same visitors are returning to those sites at different times, using different devices.
It’s no longer enough to create a “mobile only” version of the site with fewer features – if someone is visiting your site looking for something specific, and they return later on a different device but cannot find that same information,then you run the very likely risk that that person will simply leave your site and take their business elsewhere.
Responsive Web design is geared towards making websites and their content available over a wide range of environments, based on screen size, platform and orientation. This is accomplished by using a mix of flexible grids and layouts, optimized images (often different sizes of the same image) and the use of CSS media queries in coding the site. As a user switches from their laptop to another device such as a tablet or smartphone, the website should automatically respond to the user’s preferences, by changing to accommodate for resolution, image size and scripting abilities.
“…when a team designs mobile first, the end result is an experience focused on the key tasks users want to accomplish… That’s good user experience and good for business.” – Luke Wroblewski
People are using the internet in new ways – and it’s clear that the main driver to a website is solid, valuable content, rather than just eye-catching layouts and images. Those things are still important – first impressions are significant – but with responsive design you can have the best of both worlds. Being able to offer your visitors a beautiful optimized online experience no matter their choice of device means an expanded the reach and improved chances of engaging with your visitors.