As many people realize the way people use the internet has changed over the years. Where once the only option was a desktop or laptop, now there is a wide array of mobile devices that consumers use to socialize, research products and make purchases. When internet marketers build, or have built, a website, the capabilities of both mobile and desktop machines must be taken into account. As a result, for internet marketing firms, good web design now means responsive web design, a term for the process of creating a site that can be accessed on many different screens effectively, yet still be ranked well with the search engines. Many best practices have been established for responsive web design, giving internet marketers a blueprint to follow when fashioning a website for a small business that will reach new customers. Here are five of those best practices.
- Navigation Menus: When trying to design a site today, mobile must be taken into account first because it is the dominant market. When starting small, it helps to only have on the screen what is necessary at that moment. Menus can be hidden until tapped by a user, as long as there is an indicator, such as an icon, to show where the menu is located.
- Make Buttons Accessible: Both buttons and links must be easy to identify and tap on whatever screen a consumer employs. Methods to accomplish this include increasing size as well as using contrasting colors for either or larger blocks of text for links.
- Reading Width Matters: Two potential mistakes come into play here, either making the width too long or too short. Too long and the text becomes too hard to follow from one line to the next. Too short and it disturbs the rhythm of the reading.
- Put What Matters On Top: Although this started with the mobile platform and a mobile user wanting information quickly, good web design places any important information, like phone numbers, or calls to action, like purchasing, where users do not need to scroll.
- Hide Content When Needed: On a mobile display, it is best to have any content either hidden in ways similar to the navigation menu or gone completely. On a desktop monitor, this would not be necessary, meaning all content can be visible to the user.
Using responsive web design as the model as the only model for good web design gives small business web design that will work for their needs. In the end, that is what responsive media is designed to do: meet the needs of everyone.