Responsive Website Design: Challenges and Concerns

One of the biggest current challenges for website owners is the rising demand for mobile accessibility. Some websites are receiving a quarter of their traffic from mobile devices. This can be an issue for some websites, as the traditional designs do not support small screens or slower connections. In light of these issues, web owners know they need to design their websites to support mobile usage. This leads to a very big decision. Should the website owner use a website specifically created for mobile use, or, do they create a responsive website design?

There are major differences in these two approaches. A dedicated mobile website is created specifically for mobile devices. Responsive website design gives the same information to every device, whether mobile or desktop. The specific information the device needs, in order to display the information on its own screen, is also sent. As responsive design is a newer idea, it can be expensive to find someone who can do it well. You can easily see proof of this in all the Web pages that appear ridiculously tall and skinny on mobile devices is proof of this. Creating a responsive website is an extremely complicated process, meaning that your average coder is just not able to do it well.

Because of the complexity of the process, many designers do not understand the whole picture or the possible issues that can arise. One issue, for example, is getting photos re-sized for mobile viewing. Telling the device to make it smaller is not the best option, as many details can be lost due to the lower resolution. The screen changes can also make banners and callouts difficult to use. Navigating the website can also present a real challenge to the designer. Many of the functions cannot be changed, meaning that translating the site to a mobile format can require an entirely new navigation system.

Getting professional responsive website design, then, one that will provide a good mobile experience is very difficult and very expensive. There is no way to get around this. If you are looking for a budget responsive website, what you are going to get is budget quality. Are you prepared to pass that along to your viewers?