The history of the internet dates back to 1962 and has evolved at an incredible rate over the last 20 years. The way we browse the web and communicate with one another online has shifted from desktop computers to laptops, smartphones and tablets of all shapes and sizes. With this comes a necessity to respond to rapid changes and increasing user demand for multi-platform access to content on the internet, across various devices.
This is where responsive website design (RWD) investment makes a big impact. Responsive websites respond to their environment. As the number of mobile devices used daily grows, websites need to adapt to the user’s preferences, differently displaying how the content is laid out on screen relative to the display size. Before the development of RWD, multiple versions of a website were created for use specifically on desktop and laptops, with a mobile site and/or apps for tablets and smartphones.
Many people use numerous devices each day, such as a laptop or desktop computer at work, a smartphone whilst out and about, and a tablet at home. Mobile devices are often constrained by display size and require a different approach to how content is laid out on screen. For example, surfing the web on a smartphone would require content to be shown in a single column, whereas on a tablet the same content might be shown in two columns.
RWD crafts websites to provide optimal viewing experience, easy reading and navigation for users across a wide range of devices. The layout is adapted to the viewing environment by using fluid, proportion-based grids, flexible images and media queries.
Responsive websites also simplify content maintenance needs. When the time comes for changes to be made, previously the updates would have to be made on each site dependent on the device, but with RWD, these changes need only be made once for all devices. This means that web content will always feature the latest display across all devices for a similar look and feel.
Marketing Week (9 October 2014) featured research undertaken by digital agency Omobono* and research firm B2B International* concluding that B2B companies expect to allocate 28% of their digital marketing budget to corporate website development in the next year. This research indicates that the websites need continuous progression to marry with the ever increasing user demand of viewing content on a variety of devices.
At Bella Design we create responsive websites for clients across a range of markets, including commercial and residential property, renewable energy, recycling, engineering, consultancy, recruitment, media and many more. If you would like to explore what a responsive website could do for your business please call 01565 757 825 and ask for Paul or Tessa.
*The research conducted by Ombono was done via online interviews with 115 B2B marketers (screened to ensure involvement in B2B digital activity). B2B International conducted research via an online survey of 226 businesses in the UK and the US, in addition to an online panel completed by 45 respondents in Germany.