Don't use / What are the fundamentals of Responsive Web Design?

What are the fundamentals of Responsive Web Design?

Andy Thorne
What are the fundamentals of Responsive Web Design?

Optimising your website to adjust to different viewing methods – intuitively and automatically – is a commercial necessity. This guide explores four basics of responsive website design to keep your engagement and lead conversion buoyant.

Well over 50% of eCommerce sales now come from the billions of mobile phones people use according to 2018 results. That statistic is hard to pin down, as it is rising constantly! Reliance on new tech – such as wearable and voice-controlled devices – is also continuously changing consumer behaviours and buying patterns.

Is your website meeting the many challenges this presents, or is it ‘turning off’ large sections of your customer base?

If you don’t use responsive website design, by building layouts and code which automatically adjust to screen size, you’re strangling more than half of potential sales. Consumers are ever more unforgiving if their basic browsing needs are overlooked.

That requires websites that automatically responds to the preferred viewing methods of your customers, whether it’s a massive plasma screen TV or a wearable device, and whichever browser they are loyal to.

Keep in mind that the answer to the question ‘What is a responsive website?’ goes beyond simply the appearance of your pages. It involves formulating designs and developments that create synergy with user behaviours. Making sure that your site matches their expectations on speed and ease of interaction.

This guide explores four responsive website designs essentials, to underpin sustained business growth.

1 – Image fluidity

Image Fluidity

Ensuring your images are fluid will reduce pixel issues and load time.

Images are a potent force in grabbing the attention of your customers, and a central element of good User Experience (UX).

However, one of the most challenging aspects of building a website optimised for multiple devices and browsers is flexible images. You may well have visited sites on your mobile which distort or even miss out crucial visual content.

The basics of responsive website designs involve creating flexible grids and layouts. Within these, it is possible to be confident that your image resolution, size and load speed will automatically match all devices.

2 – Content on breakpoints

Content Breakpoints

Breakpoints will allow your site to automatically adjust image sizing dependent on source e.g desktop, mobile or tablet.

Establishing responsive architecture for your website design also focuses on the way Content is presented, to offer viewers different but equally engaging experiences. This uses adjusting graphical measurements (px).

You need at least three layouts. This would be small (under 600px), medium (600 to 900px) and large (over 900px) content structures, to create scalable viewing of your pages.

The same images, text and features are then used on all layouts. However, these are automatically displayed different and broken at different points, according to the viewing device or browser. Provider users with attractive and easy to read content, that can be scanned easily even on small screens.

3 – Responsive navigation

Responsive Navigation

Responsive navigation comes hand in hand with UX, without a suitable navigation for all sources your users may become lost and leave the site.

Building on the above, users need to be able to move around your website seamlessly and swiftly too, no matter what device or browser they choose.

They will not be impressed or patient if they need to click around to find information or zoom in and out to find navigational aids.

Newer website designs incorporate what has been nicknamed a ‘hamburger style menu’. That’s the stacked menu button in the right-hand corner, which enables viewers to click for an instant drop-down list of page destinations.

4 – Engagement


Losing engagement on forms can cost sales. Making sure your form fields are short, snappy and functional will help push those conversions

You know how essential UX is to create websites that work, boosting lead conversion.

The main reason to have a responsive website design is to support better user engagement and create the right kind of relationship with your target audience.

Making sure that images and content breakpoints respond ‘intelligently’ to different viewing methods, needs to run alongside ensuring that your brand positioning is clear on every device. As well as carefully designing and positioning your calls to action.

For example, can viewers easily see an action button on any screen, and is it straightforward to fill in form fields when using a smartphone? Is it easy to make payments on mobile phones?

Also, the user will not be prepared to whizz around on their device looking for how to contact you, or try again when a form fails to send!

Responding to changing consumer preferences

It’s basic common sense really. If your website design looks great and performs well on any device or browser, your UX goes up and that underpins potential to build your online sales.

If there is any kind of friction in viewing and using your website on a mobile phone, users will simply click away to your competitors. Think about that; 50% sales potential that you could be missing out on!

If you create one automatically intuitive website design it enables you to continue to match consumer expectations as new tech comes on the market too. Avoiding the need to create several designs and page structures to keep pace.

To respond to the need for a website that’s scalable and engaging on any device, give Factory Pattern a call.