Five J Design Blog

Responsive Web Design - What is it? Why is it essential?

Posted by Sawyer Vanden Heuvel on Tue, Jan 26, 2016 @ 13:01 PM
Sawyer Vanden Heuvel

Responsive Design

It seems like we're a broken record when it comes to talking about responsive design, but the matter of fact is that many websites we come across here at 5j Design are not built with responsive web design. 

So, let's take a step back and talk about the essentials of responsive web design and why it matters to you.


1. Mobile device usage continues to increase.

According to the Pew Research Center in October 2015, 68% of adults in the U.S. own a smartphone. That's up from 35% in 2011! Also on the rise (which is no surprise at all) is the number of people using tablet computers. Usage of tablet computers inched up to 45% in 2015. That's nearly half of the U.S. adult population! 

With more of our time being spent on mobile devices each and every day, it is crucial our websites are enjoyable experiences for potential visitors and customers.

2. We look at our smartphones frequently.

By frequently, I mean a lot! Average smartphone users check their phones 150 times each day. With this number of times we use our smartphone, responsive design can fit into how we interact with websites we search for using the mobile web browser. Having a responsive designed website makes it easier for people to navigate your site and find the information they need quickly and efficiently.

Not having a site that is responsive (or mobile-friendly) can create frustrations to the user if they have to do a lot of horizontal scrolling or "pinch & zoom" to read the information presented on the site. 

3. Your search ranking depends on it.

Last April, Google started ranking mobile-friendly websites on mobile search queries higher than static, or unresponsive, sites. Google is a business, just like anyone else, and their goal is to make sure their users are having an enjoyable experience when using their service. So, if you have a site that hasn't been updated or is frustrating to the user, Google is going to recognize that and demote your page. 

web design SEO

4. So what does it mean to have your site "responsive"? 

Having a responsive site means that your website will scale down to the appropriate size no matter what device is being used. If we had to design a website to be unique to every device out there, it would be nearly impossible to have a perfect site. Thankfully, there's development that we can do to have your site work across multiple platforms. 

Responsive Design



Now that you have a better understanding of what it means to have a responsive design website, take a look at your own website. What do you see? Have you tried using it on multiple devices? What areas could be improved upon? If you're looking to dive in even further, make sure to grab our FREE e-book below on 25 Website Must Haves.

25 Website Must Haves



Tags: Web Design, Digital Strategy

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