Responsive design has evolved with the growth of technology itself, especially with the advances within the area of mobile technology. From smartphones to tablets, portable devices are similar to desktops but the characteristics are just different enough to cause sites to be viewed differently. Companies who want to remain at the forefront of their industry need to understand both why and how to utilize responsive website design in 2014.
1. Google Recommends It
Website and application developers have heard from Google loud and clear on optimizing sites and applications, specifically when it comes to what boils down to smartphone optimization for websites and applications. What Google recommends for its potential developers is that the design for sites “serve all devices on the same set of URLs, with each URL serving the same HTML to all devices and using just CSS to change how the page is rendered on the device.” This recommendation stands out as a growing trend among industry leaders like Google with its Google Play application store for Android devices and Apple’s App Store and iTunes for iPhones and iPads.
2. Mobile Device Usage Continues to Rise
With the popularity of mobile devices like tablets, smartphones and similar handheld devices on a steady rise, the demand for websites to appear the same across multiple device platforms will increase as well. This would throw website developers into a tailspin if they had to redesign a site or application every time a platform is enhanced, or when a new type of device is introduced into the mobile technology marketplace. Luckily, responsive design will address this issue regarding mobile device usage. There will be no need to scrap the current design when the time comes for a website to improve its accessibility and visibility on a variety of platforms or devices.
3. Easier to Manage than Previous Design Strategies
Previous website design strategies required an additional mobile site. Much like the name describes it, responsive design requires far less work on the back end and creates a design that is easier to manage as new advances arise within the technology. Such a design optimizes viewing a site on a mobile device like a tablet or smartphone no different than the viewing of the same site on a desktop or laptop.
4. Creates a Positive User Experience
Mobile users tend to stick around websites that offer a positive experience. This experience can easily become frustrating, confusing and unsettling when the mobile version of a site does not offer the same features as a company’s standard website. These types of experiences put a dent in website usage, views, and stickiness at a rapid pace, requiring web developers to respond quickly in order to re-engage previous site users.
5. Helps Incorporate Flexibility for the Future
Mobile technology usage is on the rise, but mobile technology development is on the rise as well. During 2014, it would not comes as a surprise to see a growth in the diversity of mobile devices introduced within this same year. Customer demands for faster, more powerful and more responsive mobile devices will drive up the demand for responsive website design strategies that prepare for the unveiling of new mobile devices.
Technology is constantly changing and for companies to remain at the forefront of their industry, they will need to incorporate responsive design into their development strategies for 2014 and beyond.
What other reasons can you think of for investing in responsive design? Share them below!