Ted Hickman

Responsive Web Design – What It Is And How To Use It



Everyone wants a stress-free online experience when browsing a website, whether on their phone, tablet or computer. Statistics show that most people are likely to leave a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load or respond to a command. As a website owner, you want to deliver a browsing experience that makes it possible for your website and its pages to be fully accessible to your online visitors regardless of the device they use. To be able to achieve this, though, your website needs a responsive design.

What does a responsive web design mean?

Also known as RWD, responsive web design is a modern website design approach that makes it possible for any website’s pages to display on various screen sizes or devices. It does so by automatically adapting to any screen, whether it is a smartphone, a tablet, a laptop, or a desktop screen. According to this design approach, a website pages’ design and development should respond to any user behaviour and environment in terms of screen orientation, size, and platform. Fortunately, with the help of a web design agency, you can enjoy the benefits of RWD. 

How does a responsive website design work?

A responsive web design takes advantage of Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). It uses different settings to serve various style properties, considering factors like the screen colour capability, resolution, orientation, size, and any other unique characteristic a user’s device may have. This offers a massive advantage over the burden of creating different website designs to suit different device specs. For example, instead of creating a separate mobile version of the main website, a responsive web design allows you to automatically adapt your main website to suit any screen type, size, specs, and so on. 

How to use a responsive web design

  • Adjusting your screen resolution

Today, it is easy to create flexible designs with layout columns and texts and more flexible images. This way, visitors to your site can quickly and easily switch from a portrait to a landscape orientation while meeting the needs of different screen sizes. 

  • Image flexibility

Responsive web design offers you several opportunities to resize the images you use proportionately. However, while it may be easy to resize an image for a smaller screen (like a smartphone) if the original image was meant for a larger screen (like a desktop), it could take up a lot of unnecessary space and affect download time. 

  • Custom layout structure

If you’re dealing with enormous file sizes, your best option is probably to change your entire layout altogether. Options like the CSS media query and or using a separate style sheet can be very useful here. Plus, you’ll also be able to retain the origin styles. 

  • Javascript

You can also use the Javascript method to backup devices that might not support every CSS media query. 

  • Hiding or showing content

Sometimes, making everything on a large screen appear on a smaller screen may not be the best option. Responsive web design should also be about choosing which content to show or hide, depending on the screen size. 

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