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  Responsive Web Design – What it is and Why It’s Critical to Online Success

Posted by Kevinjcull on February 7, 2014

Responsive web design is critical in today’s world of rapidly growing technology and mobile devices. Whether you already have a business website that was built a decade ago or are in the process of having a company website designed, understanding responsive website design – and using it – is critical to success on the Internet. If you’re a bit foggy about the subject, we will explain what it is, how it works, and why it is vital to your company’s success below.

What is responsive web design?

To put it simply, it is a website design that is responsive regardless of what size screen (screen resolution) the user is viewing your website on. Think of all the various screen resolutions today; smart phones, tablets, iPads, Kindles, laptops, even full-blown desktop size. Many websites do not display properly on all of these devices, which means those companies are losing out on sales, leads, and potential new customers! Ultimately, a website should work equally well regardless of the device being used.

Think about it for a moment; with the rapid flow of new devices and resolutions, it’s nearly an impossible feat for web developers and designers to keep up – not to mention the cost to businesses to have various versions of their website designed for a multitude of devices. Websites developed using responsive design practices result in a website that responds to the behaviour of the user and environment. This is accomplished using CSS media queries, images, and layouts/grids that are flexible.

Imagine having a company website that responds to the user’s preferences whether he/she is using a tablet, iPhone, netbook, or laptop; this is what responsive web design works to accomplish. The benefits to your company are numerous. Potential and existing customers can properly access and browse your website using any device; in terms of cost, you avoid blowing your budget because you have a website built one time which works smoothly and effectively across countless screens. Instead of users having to adapt, your website adapts – giving visitors the best user experience.

Responsive web design enhances SEO

Search engine optimisation is still important today, although how it’s approached has changed dramatically in recent years. Google is no dummy; the search engine giant knows that the web is being accessed by multiple devices, including those that are mobile. Google appreciates responsive design, which ultimately means websites that employ responsive best practices will rank higher in search results pages.

Google also bases the quality of a website and its ranking on user experience and content. Considering responsive web design allows websites to deliver the ultimate site quality for mobile device users, this is a huge benefit for businesses. Because the content is often “trimmed down” to the most valuable, critical information for the user, relevant content is typically positioned toward the upper portion of the page, helping retain your website’s SEO value.

What does it all boil down to? If your website is not developed using responsive design practices, it isn’t delivering the best possible experience for users of all devices. This could essentially hurt your website in terms of SEO and search ranking!

Is your company website responsive?

As you can clearly see by now, responsive website design is a must for today’s online businesses. People are constantly on the go, accessing the Internet from a multitude of devices and hundreds (or even thousands) of screen resolutions. If your website doesn’t give the user a good experience, chances are you have lost a potential customer forever. Get in the game and make 2014 your most successful year ever online!

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