Thanks to the habits of modern consumers, apps and websites can no longer only be crafted for one specific type of device or operating system, but rather need to be compatible with a range for maximum reach. As a result, application developers and website managers have been tasked with quickly learning the best practices of responsive web design.
"Apps and websites must be compatible with a range of operating systems."
Business.com reported that more than two-thirds of consumers will purchase items from websites that are formatted to their mobile devices, and 40% will not return to a site that is not mobile friendly. Interestingly, the source quoted Jordan Crown Web Design's Joe Ardeeser regarding the search implications of responsive web design:
"Google is penalizing website owners because their page isn’t responsive," Ardeeser explained. "Some of the latest algorithm updates for the search engine are factoring in whether a website is mobile friendly and responsive. This has made a big impact, in our case actually helping us climb in rankings because some of our competitors' websites aren't mobile friendly and have gone down on Google."
Responsive web design is not only a critical practice today, but also one that’s going through immense change, and developers and managers need to keep their eyes on the transformations taking place.
Responsive Web Design Starts With The User
Forbes contributor Carine Alexis from Propoint recently argued that virtually every trend in responsive web design is entirely focused upon user behaviors and user experience. This is just one reason behind the constant state of flux the movement has found itself in, with consumer behaviors changing rapidly. If websites do not offer the visitor a seamless and friendly experience, chances are it will not get much traffic over time.
According to Propoint, more firms are beginning to focus on design, typography, background videos, three-dimensional animations, and even content in their current strategies. However, none of these are necessarily straightforward because developers need to understand how users interact with all of these media types, formats and otherwise. Hence, there are many angles that need to be covered to get responsive web design right currently, and there must be a persistent focus on gathering information related to user experiences to guide programs in the right direction.
Watch Customer Usage Trends
Businesses can do themselves a big favor by building data-gathering and responsive design strategies alongside one another. Because of the sheer breadth and volume of elements that users interact with on the average site today, information should be automatically generated and analyzed for testing purposes.
Business 2 Community contributor Lara Berendt stated that developers must remember responsive web design's core drivers are essentially mobility and growth, and that it will be lower risk, faster and far more profit-friendly within a relatively short period of time. Users are only going to use more mobile devices as time goes on, and that means more operating systems that need to be tested for website and app functionality.