Responsive Design

What is Responsive Design? Responsive means that the layout and styling of a website adjusts to consider the screen size of the computer or device that is viewing the web page. The goal is to make the very same content easily readable and to avoid unnecessary horizontal scrolling.

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Many techniques are used to make a website respond to the user’s screen size. Images might shrink to fit the screen width but usually these will only shrink to a minimum before the layout of the page re-formats so the image doesn’t become too tiny to decipher. So a sidebar might automatically drop down below the main content of a page to offer its space to the main content. Menus may reformat to stack rather than spreading horizontally. Text might center on smaller screens. The list goes on.

In the early days of viewing web pages on phones and on tablets, the device’s browser would shrink the entire page to fit its screen. Then visitors would have to zoom-in to the areas of the page they wanted to be able to read. It was much like viewing web pages with tunnel vision.

The first solution that web developers came up with was to have a separate site for mobile devices, usually a simplified version that would offer a quick route to only the most critical elements of the site. This method is still used on many sites and is a good choice depending on the site’s complexity and the basic needs of a mobile user.

However, the vast majority of websites today incorporate the responsive approach of reformatting the web-page elements so the site visitor can have access to all the site has to offer in a mobile-friendly format.

At Websentia Web Services, all websites are developed using responsive design.