What is responsive design and why is it important?

Hello everyone! Today we are going to talk about What is Responsive Website Design (RWD) and what to consider when designing a website for mobile screen.
Thinking about how your website design is going to look like on a mobile is a required part of the design process. Everyone is using their phone in 2018. So in this article, I'm going to give you some useful tips to see your mobile design work really well. There are lots of CSS framework available in market but Bootstrap framework is best for creating Responsive website design for beginner. you can try this.

What is Responsive Website Design

Reactive design VS Responsive design

First of all, just that we all are on the same page, you might be thinking, Reactive design, You have seen a lot of this word. What does it really mean?
Well if the design is responsive, it means that the elements in it will resize depending on the browser width or height. Then there's also adaptive design which means that instead of resizing at any point, there are pre-defined break points in which your design will adapt to benefit the screen sizes.

When I'm designing a site, I like to use adaptive design for large screen sizes. It's just because I feel like I can have more control over the design that way and how it's going to look for the end user. And then I use responsive design approach for smaller screen sizes where space is at a premium and everything is much more restricted. Got it? Good. Now, Let’s talk about the tips you need to keep in mind to create a great design for mobile screen.

The first tip is that you've got to consider how your design will look on small screens from the very start. This can't be something that you throw in at the end. You can't design and build out your whole desktop site and then think about it. It's really important to incorporate planning how it's going to work on mobile into part of your design process. So much of the web is viewed on mobile these days that it just can't be left as an afterthought.
And the thing is that you’re The way your website looks on mobile doesn't just have to be like the smaller shrunken version of your desktop site. You could optimize for mobile and a lot of people actually choose to take the approach of designing for mobile first, because they say that it gets you to the root of like the simplest version of your design. Space is at a premium.

You're really thinking about what's on screen at any given time. But even if you don't take a full mobile first approach, I often do still start with desktop, to be honest. I don't know if that makes me a bad designer. But what I do is I have two outboards on Sketch when I'm designing. I have one that's set large screen size and then right next to it, I have a skinnier mobile version. So when I'm creating my components and designing them, I'm also planning how they're going to work on mobile right alongside it.
I think considering the two extremes like this, the largest screen size, the smallest screen size, in tandem as I'm designing, really helps my creative process. And it makes me consider mobile from the start. So I highly recommend you give it a try.

Grids are really important for Responsive design

Tip number two for designing with mobile and this could actually be just a tip for designing for the web in general, is to use a grid. Grids are really important because they give your design structure and often make it much more balanced and visually appealing. Using grid help you with the visual design of your website, it also helps with the structure of how it's built and how you’re different elements can break down depending on, you know, different screen sizes. I would say the best grid system for the web at the moment is Flexbox. And I would highly recommend you read up on it and just have an understanding of how it works so that as your designing.

Menu replacement of Smaller devices

The third thing you really have to watch out for when you're designing for mobile is the navigation. Obviously, on a desktop feel, you can have a row of links like this at the top that's really useful. Your visitors can find their way easily to different pages on your site. But as your screen gets smaller, it's going to be impossible to have a row of links like that unless the font is really small. And then that's not very usable. So that's why things like the hamburger menu are really popular. How that works is basically on smaller screen sizes, it compresses your menu items into a drop down of sorts. So if I click this icon here, all my menu items are still there accessible behind this menu icon. Something else to consider because I see this a lot in menus is drop downs working with a hover state. Hover states aren't really a thing on touchscreen devices. So make sure you keep that in mind when you're designing and thinking about how your menu is going to work. Make sure that it also works by clicking or tapping, not just on hover.

And my last tip for you, is that you always need to be thinking about the user and their experience. When someone is using a mobile screen, it's not just that the screen is smaller; that's not the only change from your desktop site. Often the user's going to be in a different situation when they're using it as well. They might be out and about. They might be on public transport, walking down the street. So you've got to optimize beginning the most relevant content to them quickly. Sometimes this might mean slightly changing your content depending on the screen size. I've got an example here of a page I've designed for Tradecraft which is our monthly publication at Convertkit. On the desktop version, you can see it says "Download the guide". And there's like a little download arrow icon, but then if I show you the smaller screen size, the icon changes to a little email. And it says, "Get the full free guide". Both of these forms are the exact same.

The same thing happens, but when you're on your phone, you don't really want to download something. That's not something that you'd do on a phone. So that makes that call to action less enticing if I'd left it saying download. So I changed it, so that people on the phone will realize that it's going to be useful for them to click it too. So for a quick recap to end things off, the five things that I want you to take away from this video are that you need to consider what your design will look like on mobile right from the start of your design process. Involve it. Don't just leave it to be an afterthought. Make sure you're designing using a grid and don't be afraid to like change the width of columns,

Stacking matters

The stacked things on mobile, whatever you need to make it work best for that small screen size. If you use percentages for the widths on the elements that will respond to the different screen sizes really well. And again, don't be afraid to change those percentages up to work better on smaller screens. You probably going to need to collapse your navigation for mobile screens. And make sure that all of the links that you're using in it have enough space around that they're tap able. And lastly, remember that if your user is viewing your site on a smaller screen size that might mean they're in a different situation to viewing on a desktop as well. So design for that. Adapt content to fit it. Hopefully these tips are going to help you with your responsive web design process and help you make better designs for mobile screens.


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