nce upon a time, businesses had to create two versions of one website — one for desktop and the other for mobile users. The mobile website was a text-heavy version of the main site. While these sites were faster, they usually eliminated the design characteristics that distinguished the company.
Some businesses still create two websites today, but things have changed.
Instead of creating a separate mobile site, you can leverage responsive web design that adjusts its layout to screen sizes. There are a gazillion elements to consider when building a responsive website, but we want to focus only on the six most important ones worth attention.
The navigation elements are critical for a responsive web design as they dictate users' experience. People want to find the information they need intuitively and navigate your site on any device effortlessly.
To simply navigation of your site in all screen sizes, you should pay attention to some elements such as:
A responsive web design not only scales your site when it's first served to a user. It also adjusts when visitors make their browser tab appear large or smaller. When the screen size adjusts, the column changes its width and position to fit the available space.
For instance, on a desktop monitor, the column can arrange side by side, while on a mobile screen, the column might stack vertically. Adjusting the layout based on the user's screen makes reading and interacting with site content easier.
A responsive website will scale headlines, text, images, and ads to the correct position while maintaining the integrity of the design, both when the website is first served and when the browser resizes.
Excellent responsive designs consider the display of a call to action (CTA) regardless of the screen or browser size. Your CTA should be accessible and effective on all devices, including:
The best approach to a responsive CTA is to keep it simple. Avoid cluttering it with too much text or design elements that may distract or confuse website visitors. Make the CTA visually prominent and easily identifiable on the webpage.
For desktop users, you can make the CTA appear above the fold or at the end of the content. You can make it available for mobile users without the need to scroll or zoom.
A responsible web design preserves padding and white space on various screen sizes to ensure the items on the page have the correct information hierarchy. Nothing should feel crowded or misaligned.
Website layouts that adjust to screen sizes present information in the best visual manner regardless of screen size. Ensure that padding and margins don't disappear on smaller screens. Font sizes and line spacing need to adjust to the screen's relative whitespace amount.
Simply scaling and moving elements around on a flexible grid doesn't address the issue of your site losing its unique branding when building a mobile version. Building a responsive design requires you to design for three or four widths.
You should watch your colour scheme to ensure they are similar regardless of screen size. Colour schemes are typically divided into two sets of colours:
The primary colour schemes are the more dominant colours and are primarily found in the following:
Secondary colours are usually used as accent colours, among other cases.
You'll often see that the colour scheme will include several shades of the same colour to give the website a varied yet consistent feeling throughout its design.
Regardless of your colour scheme, choose a high contrast ratio to ensure readability and accessibility for all users, regardless of their device. Your site pallet should cater to people with colour blindness or low vision who cannot distinguish between specific colours.
Delivering an inconsistent browsing experience across different screen sizes guarantees frustration to visitors to your site. Frustrated visitors can increase the site's bounce rates and page abandonment.
All your site information should be readily accessible across all forms of your website design. Most importantly, your navigation menu, key content, and contact information should be effortless to find across different devices and screen sizes.
Consistency in your website design can help establish and reinforce your brand's identity making it easier for users to recognize and remember your website. Users won't need to spend time learning new navigation systems or searching for content when they change the devices they use to access your site.
The vast majority of the world's population uses mobile devices to access the internet. Businesses no longer have the option to be viable without a website.
However, you must have mobile users in mind when creating a website.
While you can create a separate mobile website, you can have just one responsive website ready for all devices. Apart from catering to your mobile users, a responsive site offers you lower maintenance costs than running two versions of one website.