Wikipedia says, ‘Responsive web design (RWD) is a web design approach 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.’ A responsive web design uses “media queries” to figure out what resolution of device it’s being served on. Flexible images and fluid grids then size correctly to fit the screen. Simply it is the approach that suggests that design and development should respond to the user’s behavior and environment based on screen size, platform and orientation. The practice consists of a mix of flexible grids and layouts, images and an intelligent use of CSS media queries.
According to Jeffrey Veen, “Day by day, the number of devices, platforms, and browsers that need to work with your site grows. Responsive web design represents a fundamental shift in how we’ll build websites for the decade to come.” So, thousands of people are viewing your content on thousands of oddly shaped and different sized screens and responsive web design is the web development industry’s answer to these problems.
Do you need to have Responsive Web design?
- If you can afford it. And it also takes longer to develop.
- If you want to stay at the forefront of what is digitally possible.
- When your audience uses tablets or Smartphone on a regular basis to view your content.
- If you wish to have a consistent digital brand.
The pages containing responsive design use x and y coordinates on a grid for layout and mathematical percentages for images instead of fixed-width parameters. Responsive web design workflow is still evolving and is becoming gradually more streamlined, but currently, it’s quite impossible to complete the same website project without increasing the resources you spend. From analysis taken by a market research showed nearly 70% of respondents described their experience level with responsive design as “average” or better, and more than half of that group described their companies as “ahead of the curve” or “state of the art” when it came to the design technique. Responsive websites are not much smaller in download size when viewed on smaller devices or screen resolutions when compared to being viewed on a desktop browser jacked into a broadband internet service provider.
Some of the features of responsive design:
- A single site and design framework
- One build for multiple experiences
- Adaptation depending on browser size
Responsive web design is broken down into three main components, including flexible layouts, media queries, and flexible media. Media queries provide the ability to specify different styles for individual browser and device circumstances. Responsive design improves search engine optimization. For anyone building a website with branding, sales, or visibility in mind, this benefit alone is enough reason to consider using a responsive design scheme. Another advantage is that for analytics and data collection, you do not need to track multiple URLs and redirects in addition to the main site or URL. One of the oft-cited SEO benefits of responsive design is the ability to present a single URL for a page, rather than a separate mobile URL.