These days, people are just as likely to use their mobile devices as their computers to access the Internet. This probably wouldn’t be a problem except that there are still some big differences between even the most advanced smartphones and desktop computers, and those differences can have a big impact on businesses.

No matter how sophisticated smartphones and tablets become, they still have smaller screens and different interfaces than most desktop computers. For the longest time, that meant using a smartphone to view websites that were designed to be viewed on a computer monitor and navigated with a mouse and keyboard could be problematic. Web designers first addressed the issue by designing mobile versions of websites that would only be seen on mobile devices; this was known as Adaptive Design. That worked well enough at first, and there are still mobile versions of websites routinely used today. Unfortunately, this meant that designers essentially had to create two different websites, which wasn’t great for productivity—or SEO. Keep reading to find out why responsive design is ultimately better than having both a mobile and a desktop version of your business’ site.

 

Mobile Devices and Responsive Design

More and more people use mobile devices to access the Internet—a surprising number of people only go online with a mobile device—and any good marketing campaign should take that into consideration. Instead of creating a separate mobile version of a website, designers are now creating their sites using responsive design. Responsive design refers to a method used to display all the information on a website at once, whether it is viewed on a computer or a smartphone. The site responds to the screen size and operating system: the site retracts to fit a smaller screen when viewed on a mobile device, yet it remains just as complete and functional as it would if it were seen on a larger computer monitor. From the users’ perspective, a responsive site is much more functional and much easier to use than an abbreviated, “mobile-friendly” version of a desktop site.

 

The Benefits of Responsive Design

There are some very clear benefits to using a responsive design when creating a website. The most obvious one is that it increases the visibility of the site itself. Tablets, smartphones and even wearable tech is growing so popular that it’s only becoming more important that a website be functional when someone brings it up on a mobile device. At the same time, “old fashioned” desktop computers won’t be going away anytime soon. Ignoring the average computer user is just as bad as ignoring the countless people who primarily surf the web on their smartphones. Responsive design allows one site to serve both mobile and desktop users equally well.

 

Responsive design is a relatively new concept in the marketing and web design world, but it is one that makes too much sense to be ignored. It allows designers to work more efficiently without worrying that their efforts may be lost on the 30% or more who reportedly primarily use mobile devices to access the Internet. Responsive design represents the future of web design, and it could be exactly what your company’s website needs to get noticed by millions of potential customers.

 
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