Over the last few years people has been using mobile devices more and more to browse, buy and play online. In the world of web development it has been increasingly common to see the term ‘Responsive Web Design’, so what is it?
Responsive web design is an alternative way of creating mobile friendly websites. With responsive web design you no longer have to create a separate website optimised for each device you want your website to support, In addition to this you only have to manage one set of content. On some websites with an M. domain not all the information is displayed on a mobile version of the site often leading to people having to view the full version anyway. Because RWD uses one website and one set of content then it will be consistent between devices.
In regards to SEO, responsive web design (RWD) offers a huge advantage over a separate mobile domain. Because the mobile site allows you to have the same content as the main desktop site, however Google does not see this as duplicate content. With RWD the mobile website and the desktop website are the same with the same URL and the same content, Google is more than happy with this as the even recommend Responsive Web Design for your website.
With tablets and mobile phones having many different sizes and form factors the m. domain method does not work consistently across all devices. With RWD the website adjusts the layout depending on the size of the device as well as the type. This is highly beneficial for usability of your website as you can adjust the layout for the type of input being used. With touch devices you need larger buttons that are easier to press with fingers and desktops predominantly use a mouse and having large buttons on these devices will simply be a waste of space.
Not only does Responsive Web Design allow your website to support current devices screen sizes but it will also be more future proof than two separate static sites. The website will scale much more gracefully and it is easier to implement support for higher resolutions that are not currently available in today’s market.
All this helps the user’s ability use their mobile devices more effectively, and with the spend of mobile advertising reaching over 2 billion in the UK alone in 2012, you can see that big and small brands alike are now seeing the huge potential of optimising their site for mobile!