The website you designed looks awful. The one you designed for the desktop is impossible to use on your mobile phone or tablet. Make sure you aren’t falling prey to a design blindspot and work on a responsive web design.
Responsive web design is web pages that can respond to the needs and capabilities of the device they are being viewed on. Webpages don’t come prepared to be perfectly accessed on every device. There are design elements that go into the responsiveness of your webpage.
The elements we will discuss are viewpoints, breakpoints, layout techniques, and media queries. After you take care of the backend you will need to go through and run testing and revision. We also talk about checking on your web design.
If you are lost by the terms above don’t worry. We will break down these responsive web design top tips.
If you are having trouble with web design or want to learn more read our responsive web design guide. We will give you 9 helpful responsive web design tips that will have your website responsiveness moving in the right direction.
1. Set Your Viewpoints
When designing your webpage you must choose viewpoints. Viewpoints are the dimensions and scaling of the page. Today websites are viewed on different types of screens. Tablets, phones, and desktops have different dimensions, so it’s important to factor this into your web design.
Also, more and more websites are being accessed on mobile phones. Making sure your business’s website is really important because it will most likely be accessed on their by most of your customers. Having a mobile site that isn’t business-friendly can lead to losing business.
When designing have a meta viewpoint tag in the head of the document. Meta viewpoint tag optimizes web pages for a variety of devices. The meta viewpoint tag will tell the browsers how to control the dimensions and scaling of the webpage.
Without metadata viewpoints, mobile browsers will show the page at the desktop screen width. The mobile browsers will try to make the content of the website look better by enlarging the content scale having the content scale to fit the screen.
The problem with this is the webpage will appear inconsistent to the users. They may have to minimize or zoom into the content to interact.
With the meta viewpoint value, the browser has instructions to match the screen’s width in device-independent pixels. Now the page resizes content to match the different screen sizes
2. Size Your Content for the Viewpoints.
If your webpages content width is smaller or larger than the viewpoint width it could not size correctly on the mobile screen. For example, if the content width is too small the text will be scaled up making the text very large and hard to read.
Since the content on websites is viewed horizontally there needs to be an adjustment for mobile users. Mobile users view the content vertically. If there are no adjustments this could lead to a poor user experience.
You want to avoid your user having to scroll horizontally when interacting with the mobile webpage. This can happen if your content was scaled wider than the viewpoint width.
If you are not sure if the content of your webpage is sized correctly to the viewpoint you can use Iconicweb services. Iconic Web can draft your webpage and offer unlimited revisions. Revisions are ways that ensure the web page has great responsiveness.
3. Adjust Your Images
How can you make sure images can fit in the dimensions of the mobile webpage? Images, with fixed dimensions, can cause a scroll bar if the dimensions of the image are larger than the dimensions of the viewpoint.
Using a maximum width of 100% for images will cause the image to shrink to fit the dimensions. This is for when the viewpoint size is smaller than the image.
Using width is 100% could cause the image to stretch larger than the natural size. Make sure to use max-width because it will make sure the image will not stretch larger than the natural size. This should solve the issue of a scrollbar appearing on the mobile website.
To avoid a layout shift when the content loads add the dimensions of the image to the img element #. This will reserve the space for the image before it loads.
If you need images for your web design some web design services include access to stock photography, videos, and other assets. This is helpful because professional photos can be expensive.
If you don’t have the money for the stock photos you will need to learn how to take your own. If you want advice on taking photos for your webpage look here.
4. Layout for Responsive Web Design
Screen dimensions are different depending on the interface. The dimensions vary between phones and tablets. They can even differ depending on the phone.
Given the variety, it’s important to not rely on a particular viewpoint width to render well. The solution is using percentages for widths. This way the columns will be a certain percentage of the container.
Making the layout responsive is a really great aspect to have for your business’s webpage. Forbes includes responsive design in an article about 13 important elements of web design.
When using percentages for widths the columns become narrower avoiding the scrollbar. In the next section, we will go over the different layout techniques. These techniques are responsive web design top tips.
5. Use Layout Techniques
There are layout techniques that make the creation of flexible grids easier. The techniques I will talk about are Flexbox, Grid layout, and Muti-Column layout.
the Flexbox is a layout method where you can display items in a single row or wrapped into multiple rows when space decreases. This is good if you have a set of items of different sizes.
Flexbox will size the items to fix into the row or rows. The items can change to fit into smaller spaces or flex to fill additional spaces.
If you want to have flexible grids you can use CSS grid layout. A grid is a collection of horizontal and verticle lines. Grids help line up design elements. They will typically have columns, rows, and then gaps between each row and column.
CSS grid layout allows you to create flexible grids. This does not use percentages, but the grid layout and fr unit will create flexible columns. Grid will help you create a regular grid layout.
If you want to have a responsive number of columns you can use the multi-column layout. The multi-column layout is a specification that allows you to layout content in columns.
The three layout techniques can help you create a responsive web design. Flexible grids will help with the content of your website adjusting to different platforms.
6. Use CSS Media Queries
Media queries are useful when you need to make more extensive changes to layouts. Sometimes you will need to make more extensive changes to the layout because of certain screen sizes.
Media queries can target particular viewpoint ranges and apply custom styles. This can help responsive business design.
CSS is the most common place to find media queries. In the style sheet, you will find an @media rule that tells the specific conditions for the content. It tells the browser when and where to apply a set of styles depending on if the browser matches the condition.
Typically you are querying features of the device to provide an adjusted layout for a smaller screen. This will help you with responsive web design.
The features that the media queries detect are width, height, orientation, and aspect ratio.
There are media queries based on device capability. These take into account the type of pointer used to interact with the device and whether the user can hover over the element.
There are features called any-hover and any-pointer and they can test the capability to hover. This test will help consider every situation someone is in when using the site. Running this test will help your responsiveness.
7. Choose Breakpoints
Breakpoints are the points at which the content of your website will respond. This provides the user with the best layout to view information. You define your breakpoint at the widths you’re looking to target.
To optimize your breakpoints and maintain the least amount of breakpoints as possible design the content to fit on a small screen first. After that expand your screen until a breakpoint becomes necessary.
Another tip is to choose minor breakpoints when necessary. You typically choose major breakpoints when the layout changes significantly. It’s also helpful to adjust for minor changes it can help the layout feel more natural.
There are other aspects of the web design that require you to add breakpoints. In the next section, we will take about how you can optimize your text.
8. Optimize Your Text
Your text content should be optimized for reading. This is to make sure you have good readability on any device.
Columns should contain between 70 and 80 characters per line. Add a breakpoint every time the text block stretches past 70 characters. You can also set a static value for the font size and adapt it to each media query.
Hiding content is not a solution. It is not recommended that you hide content just because it doesn’t fit on the screen. You can learn more about screen sizes here.
The way to optimized text is to have a responsive font size. The two was we discussed are change your font with media queries or adding breakpoints.
Having optimized text is important, but another tip is to consider reliability. There are many ways to make your text content easier to read. Companies can help you with your content’s SEO. You can get a free local SEO audit here.
9. Test Your Responsive Web Design
Once you have your viewpoints, breakpoints, media quires, or anything else we discussed test out your web design. It’s always a good idea to preview your design before publishing your website.
Check your web design on desktops, tablets, different types of popular phones. Look to size if their content sizing issues or if any content is hidden.
Check for things like:
- The layout adjusts to the correct number of columns
- Font size fitting the screen
- The content fits inside the elements and containers on different screens
Webdesign services can take care of designing a responsive page. After the design of the responsive web page, they will revise and preview the page on different platforms. Iconic Web has a basic service that will take care of mobile and tablet design.
Responsive web design is not a skill you will learn overnight. Our article has provided you with some helpful tips to get you familiar with the process. The most important thing about an impressive website is its ability to impress on any device.
While we hoped we broke it down it is important to know either HTML or CSS to build a responsive web design. If you don’t know to code there are things you can do.
There is a web design company that can help you will your personal or business web design. These companies also take into account your web design responsiveness. You can check out Iconic Web Business Webpage Packages.
Not sure where to start? If you are just starting to think of your website and not sure what you need you can get in touch with Iconic Web by calling. You can get a free custom proposal today.