Today's world revolves around mobile devices for business and personal use. An estimated 97% of Americans now own a cell phone of some kind, with close to 85% of those being a smart phone that can use your website. Keep in mind that each device usually has a different resolution based on size, different screen quality based on manufacturer, and even different software based on the operating system. You can now see why responsive web design is massively important to your website design business.
If you ever see a website in "full screen mode" and you have to do the pinch-zoom technique you know it's not a responsive website. Since March of 2020 Google has prioritized "mobile-first design" in it's indexing algorithm, making this a #1 priority for you SEO campaign.
What is a mobile website menu?
Typically, when people see the "hamburger icon" they know this is the indication of a mobile menu. A mobile website menu is an important feature because it helps to improve the user experience for visitors accessing the site on a mobile device. Often it is the same links and structure as the desktop version just re-styled or scaled down to fit the viewport width of the mobile device.
Here are a few key reasons why a mobile menu is important for your website:
Improved navigation: A mobile menu helps to streamline the navigation process for users accessing your site on a small screen. It condenses the main menu items into a drop-down or slide-out menu, making it easier for users to find what they are looking for without having to scroll through a long list of links.
Enhanced usability: A mobile menu can greatly improve the usability of your website for mobile users. Without a mobile menu, users may struggle to navigate your site, leading to frustration and potentially causing them to leave. A mobile menu makes it easy for users to find what they are looking for and access important information on your site.
How are images optimized for responsive web design
Optimizing graphics or photos is the next step in effective responsive web design. This process has to be duplicated for background images, featured images, logos, photos and other assets that are a jpeg, gif, png, or webp file.
There are multiple ways a website developer can choose to optimize images:
Dynamic caching: Using a server side software, developers can specify image width and height requirements. For example, mobile device width's are around 600-700 pixels while desktops are around 1100-1300 pixels.
Content Delivery: Companies with high traffic loads and massive image storage needs often choose a third-party content delivery service to optimize images. A service like this can present users with size according to device and software requirements unique to them.
HTML: HTML has evolved from the basic tag with one source. You can now use break points based on pixel width to load different image sizes.
CSS: By using CSS media queries we can load different size images at different screen sizes and even different devices.
Store your responsive web content in a container
The most useful HTML element in responsive web design is a "container". The HTML element can be a simple DIV, a SECTION, or even the MAIN element. It acts just like it sounds, as a container for all your graphics, text, components, and video.
How it works is by having a max width property of typically 100% with padding or something like 95% without padding, and a width property that is responsive. The width property can typically change depending on web developer preference along th e lines of 800px, or 1024px, to create a single column layout when the screen size is maxed out.
Why responsive design matters?
At the beginning of this article we covered the massive reach and expansion of mobile devices. Your websites responsive design also matters for desktops with machines like 27 inch iMacs and dual monitor gaming rigs also becoming more popular. Proper development of responsive websites matters to your business now more than ever.
Higher placement in Google rankings because of a well developed website that has structured content and a mobile-first web design can save you money. Those marketing dollars can be put to better use in other areas, like creating content, social media advertising, or pay-per-click ads.