Top Responsive Web Design Agency In USA
Defining Responsive Design
Responsive web design (RWD) is a web development method that creates dynamic changes to the appearance of a website, based on screen sizes for responsive design and orientation of devices used to view it. RWD is one approach to the problem of designing for the multitude of devices available to customers, scaling from tiny phones to huge desktop monitors.
Mobile device usage to visit the internet has continued to grow astronomically. These devices are often constrained by display size and require a different approach to how content is laid out on the screen.
Responsive web design responds to users’ needs and the devices they’re using, allowing changes in layout based on the size and capabilities of the device. For example, a phone users might see content in a single column view; whereas a tablet might show the same content in two columns.
It is called responsive web design when you use CSS and HTML to resize, hide, shrink, enlarge, or move content so that it looks good on any screen.
RWD uses breakpoints to determine how the layout of a site will appear: one design is used above a breakpoint and another design is applied below that breakpoint.
Breakpoints in software development are intentional stopping or pausing places in a program, put in place for debugging purposes. At these points your site content will respond to provide the user with the best possible layout to consume the information. They are simply referred to as pauses. Although designers are told that when they first begin working with Responsive Designs that they should define breakpoints at exact device widths but a different and perhaps one of responsive web design best practices is to design for your smallest viewport first. As that view expands at one point, the design will not look good. This should be where you add a break point.
Choosing to approach the design mobile first lets you layout content in a clear and logical way on the smallest screen real-estate, and that is actually the most important aspect for your customers. This helps you identify what is the most important information on your site.
The same HTML is served to all devices, using CSS (which determines the layout of webpage) to change the appearance of the page. Rather than creating a separate site and corresponding codebase for wide-screen monitors, desktops, laptops, tablets and phones of all sizes, a single codebase can support users with differently sized viewports.
Basic guidelines and techniques for responsive web design
In responsive design, page elements reshuffle as the viewport grows or shrinks. A three-column desktop design may reshuffle to two columns for a tablet and a single column for a smartphone. Responsive design relies on proportion-based grids to rearrange content and design elements.
While responsive design emerged as a way to provide equal access to information regardless of device, it is also possible to hide certain items — such as background images, as in the Transport for London example above, secondary content or supplementary navigation — on smaller screens. Decisions about hiding content and functionality or altering appearance for different device types should be based on knowledge about your users and their needs.
RWD has potential advantages over developing separate sites for different device types. The use of a single codebase can make development faster, compared to developing 3 or 4 distinct sites, and makes maintenance easier over time, as one set of code and content needs to be updated rather than 3 or 4. RWD is also relatively “future-proof” in that it can support new breakpoints needed at any time. If a 5-inch device or 15-inch device takes off in the market, the code can support the new devices. RWD doesn’t tie design to a particular device.
Responsive Web Design Techniques
Keeping the following modern responsive design principles helps optimize the experience for everyone.
- Set the viewport: Pages optimized for different devices must include a meta viewport tag in the head of the document which gives the browser instructions on how to control the page’s dimensions and scaling.
- Ensure an accessible viewport: Although in addition to setting an initial –scale value, you can also set minimum scale, maximum scale or user-scaleable attributes to your viewpoint. However these can disable user ability to zoom the viewport, potentially causing accessibility issues. Therefore we would not recommend using these attributes.
- Size content to the viewport: On desktops and mobile devices, users scrol websites vertically, keeping horizontal scrolling or needing to zoom out to see the whole page results in a poor user experience. Content should be adjusted to fit the width of the viewport, so that the user does not need to scroll horizontally.
- Images: Images have fixed dimensions and if larger than the viewport will cause a scrollbar. Fix this by giving all images a maximum width of 100 percent. This shrinks the image to fit the space it has been placed in, should the viewport size be smaller than the image. Also, the image will not stretch larger than its natural size.
- Layout: Screen dimensions and width in CSS pixels vary extensively between devices, content should not rely on a particular viewport width to render well. Modern CSS layout techniques such as Flexbox, Grid Layout, and Multicol makes flexible grid creation easier.
- Use CSS media queries for responsiveness: Sometimes you will make wide-scale changes to layout to support certain screen sizes. This is where media queries which are simple filters, can be applied to CSS styles. They make it easy to change styles based on the types of device displaying the content, or the features of that device, for example width, height, orientation, ability to hover, and whether the device is being used as a touchscreen.
- Media queries based on viewport size: Media queries enable us to create a responsive design experience based upon responsive design principles where specific styles are applied to small screens, large screens, and anywhere in between. The feature we are detecting here is therefore screen size, and we can test for the following things: width, height, orientation and aspect ratio.
- Media queries based on device capability: With so many devices available, that varies the screen sizes for responsive design we can not work with the idea that every large device is a regular desktop or laptop computer, or that touchscreens are only on small devices. We can and should test for features such as the type of pointer used to interact with the device and whether the user can hover over elements.
Responsive Web Design Agency In USA
Appedology is a leading web design and development agency and full-service digital marketing company in the USA, situated in Corona, California.
When choosing the optimum web solutions for your business consider design services that include the following: responsive design, audit, Market research, analysis, graphics, UI, UX, user testing and implementation amongst many other features we provide to maximize the benefits of your website design. Discover what our expert team can bring to your website by contacting us online or giving us a call to learn why we call ourselves as a top responsive web design agency in USA, and how we call prove it.