Responsive Website Design – How to Create Responsive Websites

Responsive Websites are increasingly becoming more important to today’s webmasters. Responsive websites are those that adapt to changes in screen size and viewport sizes allowing web applications to respond to any changes in configuration. Responsive web design is essentially an approach to website design which enables web pages to respond well to various different viewing contexts, be it mobile devices or big devices like laptops. New work also looks at viewer proximity as a part of the viewing context of RWD. This article discusses the importance of Responsive Websites in current and future webmaster and user expectations.

As everyone knows, screen sizes of computers have been steadily shrinking over the years. Mobile devices like tablets and smart phones have made screen size significantly smaller and this has had a radical impact on website design. Most websites were developed for desktop computers with large monitor sizes. Even if you have developed a responsive website for a large number of desktop users, chances are it will look weird on small mobile devices like tablets and mobiles.

To provide a responsive website on small devices, developers usually add CSS codes to their web designs. This may work but the end result is not a professional website because most mobile devices do not support CSS pre-processors like CSS pre-loaders or background images. Furthermore, there are no standard methods of designing Responsive Websites for mobile devices. The only way to create a beautiful website is to adopt an unconventional approach and use grid maps to display content on small devices. However, many designers do not like to take chances and stick to tried and tested practices.

There are many myths and facts about Responsive Websites which prevent it from being adopted widely by web designers. One myth is that responsive web design can not be applied on mobile devices because there is no support or technology for such format. Another myth is that mobile web layouts cannot be made responsive since it will not match the size of the screen. In fact, responsive web designs can be implemented on small mobile devices as they are created using CSS maps.

Actually there are two columns methods for implementing responsive websites on small mobile phones. In this method, images are divided into two images which are resized to fit into the space available on the screen. The size of one image is always twenty-six pixels. This size can be reduced by cropping the image or by making the image fill the entire view. In addition, some mobile phones also support ‘fit to the screen’ feature which allows images to fill only the part of the screen.

Responsive websites can be created using CSS and JavaScript although it takes a longer time to develop as there are more things to consider like changing font sizes and adding images. First of all, you need to make sure that your CSS file has style definition and that it includes the relevant keywords. Next, you need to define the sizes of your text and images. For the text size, you can use Internet Explorer’s built in sizing tools while for the image sizes, you can use the Image Capture feature offered by Windows.

In some cases, developers use a parent container to create a flexible layout. In most cases though, responsive websites are created with absolute positions as they provide greater freedom to modify the layout. In addition, if your layouts require loading of external JavaScripts or Flash files then it is recommended to include these scripts and files in the bottom of the parent container. This practice enables you to place other HTML elements like images and buttons closer to the screen without making your application look messy.

There is a common misconception that fluid grids are better than fixed-width. Although both are used in responsive websites, the former is the ideal choice when it comes to designing images and media queries. The main reason why fluid grids are preferable to fixed-width is because the former can display image-rich content without making the content size unnecessarily large. Also, the size of images and media queries in a fluid grid are preserved even when the width changes. Also, the user does not have to scroll down the page to see the full image or open a new window to view a smaller version of an image.