When redesigning your site for responsive behavior, allowing it to adapt to various screen sizes and types of web-accessible platforms, there are a number of things to keep in mind. While we covered several of these in our previous article on the topic, here are a few more to help you make your site that much better:
Don't just resize your site - realign and reprioritize content. The small screens of mobile devices and netbooks make it impossible for users of those platforms to see as much of your site at once as do visitors with larger screens. The information a visitor sees first is essential, significantly affecting retention and sales conversion. Make sure that the most vital content is positioned near the top when your site is viewed on a small screen.
Be sure to cover all screen sizes. It's embarrassing for your company and awkward for your visitors when their particular device or screen size isn't supported. There's nothing worse than looking at a website on an Android phone and getting the full site—with all the uncomfortable scrolling around that that entails—while a friend on an iPhone gets the streamlined mobile site.
Minimize amount sent to devices. Good responsive design is not just style sheet optimization to produce the best layout for the size of the screen but is also detection of the device size before sending the bits from your web server. This enabled the server to customize the information sent, sending nly what will be used by the display, particularly important on 3G connected devices.
Test your site's responsiveness. This is much easier to do than you might think, and doesn't require the use of several different computers or devices. Simply look at your website through an HTML5-compliant browser (such as Chrome, Firefox or Safari) and resize the window. Your site will behave exactly as it would for users with smaller-sized screens.
To see what good responsive design looks like, have a look at a few of the sites we've created. There's our own website, of course, but also check out Taylor Morrison, Cachet Homes, and Dan Ryan Builders. If your business finds itself in need of more responsive website design, contact us for a free consultation. We specialize in responsive design for full accessibility on all devices.