Innovative Web Design Solutions

Let’s continue our discussion about Responsive Web Design — an innovative web design technique which allows websites to adapt their display to a variety of screen sizes and devices such as: widescreen desktop, tablet, and smartphones; and Mobile — a separate, stripped-down version of your main website.

Let’s compare the two

A mobile site is essentially a copy of someone’s website, where the server does the work to deliver an optimized page that is smaller and easier to navigate. This is a good choice when it might be too expensive to redesign responsively. In responsive design, the device does the work and automatically adjusts according to a device’s screen size (large or small) and orientation (landscape or portrait). It switches between these options. This is a great and flexible solution.

With a mobile site, you must create a different domain (most companies differentiate by using “”). This can add to website management because you have to maintain two separate areas of content. Responsive design allows you to keep your own domain, nothing changes except code on the back-end. Maintaining a single shared site preserves a canonical URL avoiding any complicated redirects.

Mobile is not as good for searches because it uses a separate domain. Links shared from mobile browsers will not count as search link equity toward your primary site. Since responsive design embeds new code on the back-end of your website, your link equity is preserved.

Re-working a mobile site might be necessary to stay current with evolving phones and mobile browsers, and this could require higher maintenance costs. The technology is more progressive with responsive design because once added to the site it will work on next months and year’s devices without additional programming required.  This make for a better return on investment.

There are some cons associated with responsive design

…the most common complaint is the potential for increased website load times. While it is important to deliver content with optimal viewing for every device, slow website load times are usually the first thing that turns away a visitor.

Responsive websites delivering complex functionality, such as an ecommerce site, need to be well optimized for speed to decrease website load times and increase performance. However, with a web developer who codes accordingly, slow load times should not be a problem.

The implementation of responsive web design requires an entire site redesign, and responsive websites take a bit longer to develop than the traditional website. This is because the CSS, (Cascading Style Sheet – which is what controls how the site graphically looks), is far more involved than the CSS for traditional websites.

However, if your business is concerned with staying current and being able to survive online make sure you select a web design and web development company well-versed in responsive web design.

Although there is a minority of web users who prefer the abbreviated, mobile version of a website, the majority of users prefer to have access to all the information the website contains, rather than switching to the “view full site” mode to access it. You will not have to worry about website content duplication (or updates) between your main website and a mobile website since a responsive website is not two sites, but one that adjusts itself based on screen resolution.

Happier website visitors will have a positive lasting impression of your business and will be much more likely to refer people they know; resulting in an increase to your bottom line.

Remember, while responsive web design is a relatively new way of building websites, and is not a one-size-fits-all solution for every business, it is regarded as the future of the web design industry. For the vast majority of businesses in the market for a new or improved website it is the best solution. You need to be sure to hire a web design agency who is well-versed in responsive web design; you will have a great online advantage over your competitors.

Did You Know?  The three tenets of responsive web design are fluid grids, flexible images, and CSS3 media queries to detect screen resolution.

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