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As a developer or stakeholder, you will want your website to be visible and fully functional on as many devices as possible. If you write your website to work on desktop devices you don’t want to have to write another whole website to do exactly the same thing for mobile devices. He puts forward the idea that we should design websites for optimal viewing experience on an increased number of devices. Included in CSS3, the media query, is a wonderful tool for responsive web design. Arguably the most useful two features of the media query are max-width and min-width.
The use of a max-width or min-width media query allows you to specify DOM (document object model) breakpoints ranges for different CSS styles. Above the div will have a green background colour unless the browser width is greater than 300 pixels, then it will have a red background colour. Above the div will have a green background colour unless the browser width is less than 300 pixels, then it will have a blue background colour. Mobile first is the process of creating the layout and styling of your site for mobile devices before any work is done on the desktop views. After the initial mobile design styling is complete, breakpoints are added for other, larger screen resolution devices using media queries. Breakpoints are often added to a website in order to meet the design and styling required regardless of the device being used to view the content. CSS preprocessors such as Sass, Less, and Stylus have extremely useful features to use in responsive design. Predominantly used as a Ruby on Rails plugin, Sass is a CSS preprocessor that really improves the speed of development of a responsive site with media queries. Using SCSS rules in your CSS makes it much more clear when defining styling for each breakpoint. Setting your commonly used breakpoints as SCSS variables allows you to reuse the same breakpoints easily while referring to descriptive, easy to remember, names. Without nesting each specific DOM element to be styled will appear in each breakpoint, creating significant clutter in your CSS files. With nesting the DOM element to be styled has its own breakpoint styles all in one place making it much easier to maintain and find the CSS styling you are working on. With an ever increasing number of devices network enabled, it is up to developers to ensure that the user experience is maintained and consistent across as many devices as possible. Responsive web design is the preferred choice amongst industry experts and businesses big and small. With the increasing number of people using tablets and Smartphones to access sites, you need to switch to a responsive web design to make sure every user has the opportunity to view your site.
A web designer needs to come up with a design that fits the size and scale of every browser. Be it the classical Harvard University site or the fun-filled Cafe Evoke site, there is no constraint on creativity when it comes to creating responsive web designs. A good example of the way to build on your brand identity with a responsive design is showed by Enso.
Waiting for a webpage to load or finding the next button on a mobile phone is quite annoying.
Get rid of such problems and make it easier for users to view the site and its different components.
Pay attention to small details like rather than using text links, you can always use ‘big and bright’ button that will hopefully make it easier for both the desktop and mobile users to click on them and navigate.
Moreover, we are really habituated to seeing and using sites with top navigation and probably this is the reason why designers face huge amount of difficulties when they are asked to create responsive version of a content rich site. The most intriguing part of designing a responsive template is that it is going to cater the needs of diverse types of screen sizes, resolutions and devices.
While designing for desktop devices, we are habituated to use large fonts for headers and sometimes, we use a combination of different font sizes to spice up the look. Again, when you choose images or graphics for your responsive design, you need to make sure that they can be scaled up to fit the bigger screens of desktops or down to suit tablets and Smartphones’ smaller browsers without any compromise in quality. Author BioThis guest article was written by Michael Evans, who is a passionate blogger and he is promoting MotoCMS Website Templates that help people to build impressive and strong online presence. Responsive web design is essential now a days because almost half of searches are from smart phones or other devices therefore every webmaster should be conscious about responsive website design and in this scenario your shared points are very helpful and effective to understand the technicalities of responsive website designing.
It’s about delivering one website countless ways depending on the width of the screen.
So we asked Tim Cross, one of AwesomeWeb’s finest responsive web designers, to give you insight on what it takes to build a proper, responsible, and responsive website. Whether you hire Tim or decide to add responsiveness to your website yourself, keep this as a resource to know what needs to be done. On smaller screens hiding the main navigation menu is a good way of keeping layouts simple. Your options include a simple drop down menu where the menu slides down and covers the main content below or the overlay method where the menu expands and covers the whole screen. Another way to show menus on smaller screens is to keep it visible but let the content overflow off the edge of the screen. The Guardian uses a clear, horizontal scroll menu, with an extra call to action to see “All” – this appears as a drop down menu when pressed.
The horizontal scroll menu on Google is a list of plain text links, that overflow off the edge of the screen – a simple way of indicating more content to the user.
Rather than making buttons smaller on mobile, make them larger, so that they are easier to tap.
The Add to Basket button on the Oliver Bonas site is large, clear and stands out from the page with it’s contrasting colour. The Pretty Green Energy site has big buttons, and large, clickable areas on content list items. Newer mobile devices have high-resolution screens, which makes text more legible and easier to read. No Drama reduces it’s H1 titles on mobile so that they fit on the screen and don’t over power the page. While making a layout wider on larger screens, it is important to consider the line lengths of your content.
99u keeps their pages well balanced with optimum reading widths, simple share links and a well positioned sidebar that doesn’t detract too much from the article.
As well as having the right reading widths, The Guardian’s article layout is uncomplicated, with lots of white space and a clear, clutter-free sidebar. Even with browser sizes being so varied now and the idea of the “fold” not really existing anymore, putting key call to actions at the top of the page is still important.

Metris Kitchens places it key information near the top on mobile as it is important for their users to see contact info (find a showroom) and conversion actions (request a brochure) clearly and quickly. Decide what is more important to show first on a small screen, then change the content order around – this can be achieved through CSS (and sometimes JS if the layout is too complex). If on desktop there is a text content block and an image block positioned next to one another, decide what is more relevant. Or a sidebar and a content area on a page – on mobile if this collapses then the sidebar would be first, and would push all the content down the page, therefore it would be good to swap this around on mobile.
In this editorial content piece from Brown Thomas, the product info is positioned first on mobile. The Melanie F product details page places the product image first on mobile, then pushes up the product info to sit side by side on desktop.
This portfolio grid view on Jimmy Gleeson increases it’s number of visible items as the screen gets’ wider, allowing more more content to be shown further up the page.
Smashing Magazine’s navigation layout is quite complex and changes a lot across different screen sizes. Sometimes this orientation either falls in with the small mobile layout, which is more basic and not utilising all the screen space available, or it gets lumped in with a desktop layout which can make the content all squashed up.
The layout on this Protest product details page still has a lot of information in a smaller space, without upsetting the proportions and spacing of the layout. On small devices, having an enlarge image window doesn’t work if the image you are already looking at fills the screen.
This product gallery on UrbanEars appears on the same page and expands down after pressing a link.
Touch screens are by nature intuitive to use, therefore we can be more subtle with navigational aides, e.g half an image off the screen on a carousel suggests that there is more content to come. The hover states on the Born Group’s portfolio page are animated on desktop, and show the title of the project.
A lot of effects, like background gradients and button hover states, can be achieved by pure html & css. This method allows for videos of any size to respond to device size automatically, without having to set explicit heights or widths on the video itself.
The Sonos product pages have a good balance between fixed width content text blocks and wider, full screen image panels. If your site isn’t responsive, every single mobile user that comes to your site is having a bad experience. Even if it is responsive, I’m sure there are a number of areas where it can be improved.
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In a world of constant change, it is increasingly important to keep up with the latest updates and user needs.
Responsive web design is a new web development approach suggesting that the development and design of a website should respond to user’s behavior and environment, including platform, screen size and orientation. For a better understanding of how responsive web design is implemented to websites, here you have some examples of how websites respond to different devices.
Web designers are increasingly using this new concept of responsive web design when creating websites, but sometimes it happens that they engage in creating beautiful responsive websites, forgetting that websites are mainly designed for the purpose of human interaction. This concept was introduced by Steve Krug in his book “Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability” (2000). Considering the fact that mobile and tablet use will overcome desktop use, here at Joy Group we are constantly focused on the best practices for coding responsive web design for businesses.
The problem is that devices have different sized screens with different screen resolutions. Doing so would be a massive waste of time and resources that could be better used somewhere else. This means that the same DOM element can have different CSS styling at different browser pixel resolutions. This allows you to make a website responsive while only adding a few lines of CSS to you codebase. On the project I am currently working on our Google Analytics reports that almost 50% of traffic is from mobile users and that 37% of this is iOS.
Usually this results in a less cluttered visual design across all devices due to the limited screen space available on a mobile device. This kind of breakpoint can vary from website to website, whereas device based breakpoints are fairly standard. In this post I will focus on Sass although both Less and Stylus have their own equivalents.
Instead of having styling for each breakpoint separated by media queries, all of the media queries for a specific DOM element can be nested inside the element’s initial styles.
This can be confusing and difficult to manage when you are working on large projects, as refactoring the CSS codebase may become a daunting task. Much of the nature of responsive design and how it is carried out is down to personal preference, site specification, or dictated by your tech stack. It’s no wonder that the responsiveness of a website design has become so important nowadays. Without a responsive design, people would either find a site to be bare and bland or barely visible and readable.
Their layout changes a little as the browser size gets smaller; but that little difference doesn’t separate them from their brand image. Imagine how you will feel if you have to wait for minutes to see the page or scroll from side to side to find how to go to the next page. While it isn’t much difficult for a simple site with a few pages, it’s quite a challenge for content-rich sites. This is definitely a tricky situation and the only way you can fix this by taking a robust and innovative approach to this problem. So, you have to give extra attention to make sure that the template looks good on smaller devices. As we know, this might create a little bit of trouble when the template gets loaded in a smaller device. And to achieve consistency, you need to choose the right typography and imagery that can scale and fit all kinds of browsers. In reality, creating a responsive design for a site is often a great way to express your creativity. As they have multiple collapsed menus on the same page, they use different calls to action to help the user understand the hierarchy of the page.

They also use this menu style on the desktop view, keeping the burger icon visible and simplifying the content on the page. You can afford to go a little bit smaller on mobile screens and increase the font sizes when you get to a larger display. Similarly, having lines that are too short breaks the rhythm of reading as the eyes have to move back-and-forth too often. For example, on a ecommerce product details page it’s good to have the “Add to Basket” button visible to the majority of users, without them having to scroll.
On desktop the content order is swapped around so that a lifestyle shot appears next to the product. This declutters the page on smaller screens and lets the user see all the key info, with options to view more if they wish.
This is a good example of really thinking about the layout and maximising all space available per device and screen size. Everything that appears on desktop is still there and the content is presented in a well balanced and simple way.
As this information still needs to be accessible on touch screens the hover events are replaced with touch events – one tap to view info, then another tap to view the project. They clearly thought about their users and utilises these touch events on the rest of the site, on places where it is natural to swipe – for example, on a carousel of products. Pages load faster, which is especially good for mobile, and less time is wasted creating lots of graphics. Adding colour, which is as easy as changing a font colour, is a great way to add more impact to your page. No heights or widths are specified, allowing easy content management and quick page creation. By giving them more content below the “fold” you’re actually inviting them to be more engaged with the page and to read your content. Thus, in the field of web design and development we are constantly focused on staying updated to new trends and implementing new solutions for greater user experience with their so many resolutions and devices. More simply put, responsive web design is the technique of adapting a website’s design to multiple resolutions and devices. Given the rapid adoption of smartphones and tablets, and also the fact that users currently tend to prefer reading their news on the mobile first rather than on desktop devices, responsive web design seems the perfect solution for reaching readers and ensuring a great experience on every screen. Responsive web design represents a fundamental shift in how we’ll build websites for the decade to come”. There is an increased tendency to buy tablets and smartphones instead of computers, so it is a great possibility that people will need to navigate on your website using multiple devices.
Thus, it is important to still follow the first basic law of web usability, which says “Don’t Make Me Think”. Krug’s main idea was that, despite the rapid change in the world of web design, there is one thing that should never change: the purpose of websites. Our process’ center of attention is on both separate design concepts and the unity of the website among the three different devices: desktop, tablet, and mobile. Creating art installations and wall structures that change shape when crowds approach them. The purpose of the responsive design is to make the template accessible to different devices irrespective of their sizes and specifications.
A tiny CTA button is definitely not going to entice your targeted audience to click on that and so you can understand, your website will never be able to maximize its potential. Good typography is a catalyst for the success of a website and this is even more true for responsive web design.
You would not necessarily have to change this for the sake of making your website mobile friendly.
Or perhaps, you can use photographs that can be scaled and resized without any necessity to crop them. If, for example, you have a grid of news headlines, with a text link that says “Read More” inside each of them, rather than making this the link, make the whole content block a link, so that the user can click anywhere.
If the content to be displayed on hover isn’t critical and just fancy embellishment, then disable it on touch screens all together.
My clients typically have at least 10,000+ monthly visits and I charge $1,500 – $3,000 depending on the complexity of your site.
Who would have thought that we would be able to carry the real Internet in our pockets 5 years ago?
Thus, as the user switches from laptop to smartphone, the website should automatically accommodate for the new resolution and image size. Therefore, you need to be prepared and have perfect adjustable and flexible website design that would automatically respond to your user’s mobile devices or tablets.
Therefore, web designers should always have in mind that websites’ main purpose is to offer users the information they need, without making them think. If you need a user-friendly and touch-friendly website, contact us and let’s build together a responsive web design that will help your customers and clients reach you easily on every device.
Of course, there are certain restrictions that you need to follow but that do not mean that you have to make any kind of sacrifice on the creativity front. The minimalistic approach of Time Magazine’s site offers an insight into a possible solution. As the screen size changes, the template and its different designing elements will move and the shrink or expand in size.
Try some cool plugin say for example FitText that will help you change the fonts size as per your requirements. But designing for so many phones and devices in every size imaginable proved to be a real challenge that found its solution in responsive web design. This means that the website is technically created to automatically respond to user’s preferences. By using responsive design you’ll make sure that everyone is able to access your website no matter what type or size they are using. Users should quickly understand what to do on websites and where to look for what they need, and not to start thinking about where to start and where to click.
So, you have to make sure that the typography has this capability otherwise the browsing experience would be that much engaging. To sum up, the two most important qualities of a responsive web design are adjustability and flexibility.

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