What’s the Big Deal With Responsive Web Design?

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When you hear the phrase “responsive web design,” if you’re like most people, you probably automatically think about mobile web design. And to be fair, responsive web design (RWD) has really been at the front and center of web design and development discussions when mobile web is the concern, primarily because many businesses struggle to create a mobile website that’s responsive.

But RWD is actually about much more than just creating a good mobile device experience; it’s about creating a good web design no matter which device is being used to access it and it’s about providing just as much content on a small screen as on your normal website.

For a better understanding of what responsive web design entails, take a look at the points below:

  • The biggest problem that many businesses face when it comes to web design is being able to create a good mobile web experience without crowding too much information on the page — this often leads to businesses simply taking information off their traditional website with the hope that it will benefit the mobile website, too.

  • The key, however, isn’t really about the amount of content you’re putting onto a mobile website; it’s about how you format the content on your traditional website in order to optimize user navigation, and then creating a mobile web design with correct proportions and clear navigation.

  • Google has a tendency to release algorithm upgrades without giving the public any notice, which often results in many businesses panicking because their rankings have suddenly dropped. At one point, mobile web was fairly free from this problem — but now, Google is targeting mobile web more so than ever before. If you don’t have a responsive web design, your search engine optimization strategy now is going to suffer.

So is responsive web design as complicated as it sounds? In one aspect, it can be; if you’re convinced that you need to follow the normal rules of web design, then you could run into some roadblocks. But if you can understand that a great website design is about optimizing the page for the user — and that you should constantly be looking for ways to improve it — you’ll find that RWD makes a lot more sense.