Statista reports that 52.64% of all global web traffic is generated from mobile devices. The use of mobile devices is increasing worldwide. Hosting Facts estimates that e-commerce sales through mobile devices will account for 67.2% of the total sales by 2019.
To survive the tide of mobile devices, websites too, have to embrace responsive designs. Responsive designs help websites to adapt to specific screen sizes or resolutions. Here are some of the best practices for making responsive web designs.
Web designers should always adopt a mobile-first approach while developing their websites. A mobile-first approach lets you answer usability concerns for mobile phones first. After these complications are resolved, it is easier to scale up or scale down for the desktop version. It also helps you identify which objectives of the design are essential for the website.
For instance, the purchase of a product can be a primary objective for a website. In that case, designing the CTA for a newsletter subscription will be a secondary objective for the designer.
After identifying the primary or secondary objectives, it’s easier to prioritize what to emphasize on. Designers have to be careful that there isn’t any friction between both objectives. In other words, the customer shouldn’t face any trouble while acting on the primary objective of the website.
The user interface in mobile devices is harder to navigate. You can reduce friction by implementing a one-step checkout for your mobile design. Later, you can add a multi-step check-out for the desktop version.
After the increasing use of mobile devices, fixed layouts are getting less popular. It’s best to implement an adaptive or fluid layout for your web design. A fluid layout allows your website to resize according to the browser window.
The use of percentage units for your elements can make your design responsive. You should also prefer resolution-independent graphics (like SVGs) instead of conventional JPEG and PNG formats.
Website users interact with desktop websites via mouse-clicks. However, people use their hands to interact with websites on their mobile devices. Good web designs will have design tap targets in-line with the device they are meant for.
For a desktop design, the main navigation should be at the top while it should be at the bottom for a mobile. It’s difficult for thumbs to reach edges and sides on mobile devices. This means designers have to place interactive elements at the center for mobile websites.
Adjusting to Landscape
It’s necessary for designers to consider that hand-held devices also have landscape settings. A fluid design helps to adjust the design but it can also lose some content while adapting.
Navigation in landscape mode is easier but it’s difficult to scroll vertically. Designers can overcome this problem by designing landscape breakpoints separately. For instance, they can design vertical tiled elements as a slider with left and right navigation bars.
Following these rules is troublesome for some. However, they are necessary to improve usability and give your clients an excellent user experience.