Responsive Design. What is it and why should I care ?

A non-technical introduction to responsive design and its advantages.

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What is it ?

Have you recently been hearing the term responsive design for web  ?
The idea is very simple, content on screen, adapts itself to available screen size for optimum experience.
Let me explain what I mean by when I refer to content and optimum experience
Content is image, text, video, pricing table or any combination of these.
Optimum experience can mean many different things, my definition is simple, user can read / view whatever is on screen without having to pinch and zoom.
If you see older sites, it is hard to read them on mobile devices without taking any action.
Does you site rearrange it contents to make it easy for user to read/view ?
Is your site responsive ?

Why should you care ?

A simple search on web, will tell you without doubt that mobile consumption has already dethroned consumption on PC and even TV !.

More people are likely to visit already visiting your site on mobile than on desktop.

  1. If your site is not responsive yet, you might want to ask yourself
  2. What is their experience when they visit ?
  3. Do they have time and more importantly patience to pinch and zoom ?
  4. Does that instil confidence in prospect or client ?
  5. Does google search results say your site as mobile friendly ?
  6. If not, how many other results say that ?
  7. Responsive design has a ranking advantage over non-responsive, are you willing to let go of that advantage ?
  8. Bonus question : If you are spending time and money on online marketing to drive traffic / leads to your site with few conversions,
    “Is this that the leak in your bucket ?”

If you diligently answer those, you will realize that responsive design is no more a luxury.

What to do about it ?

Nowadays you have loads of options to build responsive sites.
If you building static site, most popular choices are Bootstrap (by Twitter) and Foundation .
Whether you should build a static site ? That is probably another blog post 🙂
For dynamic site, most popular CMSes have responsive themes.
Simple search on WordPress repository  returns 1,364 themes with keyword responsive. There are many more that are available from other theme shops.
If you need to outsource it, now you know how to speak the same language as the developer/designer.

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