I have learned one solid truth on my life journey - that nothing ever ever EVER stays the same, and given the changes in technology just over the last couple of years, this couldn't be a more profound truism for business owners as well. No longer can businesses solely rely on developing a website for desktop computers because the Internet isn't something you only browse on your desktop computer anymore. It's also on your phone, your tablet, your laptop and who knows what other gadget from the future.
Adapt or Perish
According to research firm IDC:
By 2015, more U.S. Internet users will access the Internet through mobile devices than through PCs or other wireline devices. As smartphones begin to outsell simpler feature phones, and as media tablet sales explode, the number of mobile Internet users will grow by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.6% between 2010 and 2015.
Websites currently using flash for instance, are missing out because Flash is not compatible with platforms such as the iPhone and iPad, and Adobe is no longer pushing its Flash software format for use in browser programs that come with smartphones and tablet computers.
So... What's the Answer? Responsive Design.
When you visit a website today using your iPhone, desktop computer, Blackberry, iPad etc, its design needs to take into account the platform you are viewing it on, and ideally it should match the size and shape of the screen you're viewing it from. This is called "Responsive Design".
Responsive Design is a relatively new trend that's moved from the fringes into the mainstream. In a nutshell, it uses fluid widths in percentages and ems, scalable images and adjustable layouts. There are 3 very important elements in responsive web design:
- Flexible Layouts
- Flexible Images
- Media Queries
Take a look at an example below which illustrates Responsive Design across multiple platforms:
(image by Shadow Song Designs)
Here's another example of a responsive website we recently completed:
Why Should Responsive Web Design Matter to You?
The bottom line is this... business owners can't ignore the issue of multiple viewing platforms. Your website needs to accommodate multiple viewing platforms so your customers can access your products and/or services no matter what device they're using.
Call us. We can help.
P.S. Yes we know our website isn't responsive. We're working on it!