Overlapping web images. Annoyingly slow web page loads. Texts that don't fit on your screen. You have probably come across one or more of these. It can be exhausting having to wait a whole minute for that website to load, especially since you got there by clicking on an ad you thought might lead somewhere you like. Or it could be the web images that just so happen to overlap your screen edges. On behalf of these websites, sorry for the inconvenience!
However, we hope other web users who click on your website do not have the same experiences and complaints. If yes, we will show you how to do something about it. Thanks to Ethan Marcotte, responsive websites are now a thing. And guess what? These responsive websites don't have any of the issues you experienced with those websites you encountered. The good news is that even your customers, website users, and visitors can have the best and most convenient experience while visiting your website. And it doesn't matter what electronic device they use.
So let us help you understand what a responsive website is.
What is a Responsive Website?
Responsive websites, simply put, are websites created using responsive web design. A responsive website is created to adapt its layout to different screen sizes. Strikingly has some advanced layout options you can use to give your website visitors a better experience. The goal of a responsive website is to provide an optimal viewing experience for users, making it easy to read and navigate with minimal resizing, panning, and scrolling. Now, an answer to the question ‘what is responsive web design?’ would be this: a design approach that ensures that a website's layout and content are optimized for the user, regardless of the device they are using to access the site.
Image Strikingly User taken from Strikingly Website
Responsive website design is currently a web trend widely accepted by website owners and designers. It promotes the eligibility of a website and makes it seen in a multitude of screen resolutions (e.g., on Smartphones, iPad, tablets, etc.) It also improves a business's brand image, providing a seamless experience for website visitors.
Additionally, responsive web design allows for better and optimal navigation on any device. The website's visual representation changes to make it easier for the user to access and navigate web pages.
Benefits of Responsive Websites
Here are ways in which responsive websites can benefit your business.
Improved User Experience
Responsive web design ensures that all users have a consistent experience, regardless of their device. This means that the layout and content of the website will automatically adjust to fit the screen size and resolution of the user's device. This allows users to easily read and interact with the website without having to zoom in and out or click on small links. Also, a consistent user experience helps establish trust and credibility with users, leading to increased engagement and conversions.
Enhanced Mobile Experience
More people use mobile devices to browse the web than PCs and laptops. You must therefore have a website that is optimized for these devices. Responsive website design ensures that your website looks and functions great on all devices, including smartphones, tablets, and laptops. A website that is not optimized for mobile devices can be difficult to use and navigate. This will cause a poor user experience and a high bounce rate.
Image taken from Strikingly User
By providing a better user experience, responsive websites can help to increase traffic. Users are more likely to stay on and interact with a website that is easy to use and navigate. A website optimized for mobile devices is also more likely to be shared on social media, which can help drive additional traffic to your website.
Increased Conversion Rates
A website that is easy to use and navigate is more likely to convert visitors into customers. Responsive web design increases conversion rates by making it easier for users to find what they are looking for and take action. A responsive website provides a seamless user experience across all devices, which can help to increase engagement and encourage users to take desired actions, such as making a purchase or filling out a form.
Improved Search Engine Rankings
Google and other search engines give higher rankings to mobile-friendly websites. By using responsive websites, you can improve your search engine rankings and make it easier for users to find your website. It is, therefore, safe to say that responsive websites improve your chances of success in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM).
With responsive web design, you only have to maintain and update one website rather than separate versions for desktop and mobile devices. This can save time and resources in the long run. Additionally, maintaining one website is typically more cost-effective than maintaining separate versions for different devices.
Now that we are conversant with the benefits of responsive websites, how do you spot a good responsive website?
Elements of Responsive Websites
Here are some things to look out for when building your responsive websites.
- Fluid grid: This layout system uses relative units instead of fixed units, allowing the layout to scale and adapt to different screen sizes.
- Responsive images: Images should be sized in relative units to scale up or down as needed to fit the available space on the screen.
- Media queries: These are rules that allow the website to apply different styles based on the characteristics of the device being used to view the website, such as the screen's width.
- Flexible content: The website's content should be able to adjust and reflow to fit different screen sizes and devices.
- Touch-friendly design: The website should be easy to use on touch-screen devices, with buttons and links that are easy to tap and large enough to be accurate.
- Mobile-first design: The website should be designed to work well on mobile devices first and then be enhanced for larger screens. This helps ensure that the website works well on the wide variety of devices people use to access the internet.
How to Create Responsive Websites
Image taken from Strikingly User
- Responsive website builders
- Responsive Layouts/ Grid System
- Content Management Systems
- Responsive images
- Responsive typography
Responsive Website Builders
There are countless platforms for building and designing a responsive website. Many of them require little to no coding knowledge. Strikingly is one such website builder. A Strikingly website offers SEO benefits, embedded analytics systems, mobile optimization, and professional-looking templates. Check out some of our website templates here.
Responsive Layouts/ Grid Systems
The grid systems allow layouts to change dynamically based on the size of the recent screen. You can use CSS frameworks like Bootstrap or Foundation to create a responsive layout or create your own using CSS media queries. These systems comprise containers, columns, rows, and classes for organizing, arranging, and nesting some basic styles that smoothly adapt to screen sizes.
This is your best bet if you want to create a website from scratch and control every process from start to finish. A notable example of a responsive grid system is Bootstrap. It is a CSS library that allows builders to implement pretty cool things to websites without time constraints.
Content Management Systems
A Content Management System (CMS) is software used to manage the creation and modification of digital content. This is one credible tool for non-developers (like project managers, content creators, marketing directors, etc.). It makes responsive website development and management easier. A CMS furnishes a website's graphical user interface with instruments to create, edit, and distribute web content without composing code.
A CMS can be categorized into a content management application (CMA) and a content delivery application (CDA). The CMA is a graphical user interface that empowers clients to configure, implement, and eliminate content from a site without HTML information. The CDA part gives the back-end benefits that help with the onboarding and conveyance of the substance once a client is done creating the content in the CMA. WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal are the three most commonly used content management systems.
It is important to note that CMS does not offer responsive behaviors by default but is imbued with responsive templates optimized for mobile devices.
Make sure that images scale down to fit smaller screens. Consider using techniques like srcset and the picture element to serve different versions of images at different resolutions. Where you can't do that, keep your image sizes below 200kb, to help your website builder resize it easily.
Use relative units like em or rem for font sizes. Also, consider using viewport units like vw or vh for responsive typography.
Image taken from Strikingly Product
How to Build a Responsive Website with Strikingly
At Strikingly, all our website templates are predesigned to be responsive and built to be mobile-friendly. Check out these responsive web design examples that we curated for you. To create your own responsive website with Strikingly, you can follow these steps:
1. Sign up for a Strikingly account and choose a template for your site.
2. Use the drag-and-drop editor to customize the layout and design of your website.
3. Add content to your site, such as text, images, and videos.
4. Preview your site on different devices to ensure that it looks and functions correctly on desktop computers, tablets, and smartphones.
5. Publish your site and make it live for the world to see.
In conclusion, responsive web design is essential for building websites that function optimally across a wide range of devices. By using responsive website design techniques, such as flexible grids, layouts, and images, you can ensure that your sites provide an excellent user experience on all devices. In addition, responsive websites are favored by search engines, which can help improve a site's ranking and visibility.