Google is often very helpful, in that it offers valuable advice to web developers and designers who want to optimize their websites and get the best rankings on the search engines that are possible.
Recently, Google has begun to champion the concept of responsive web design, yet many people still remain confused about what this approach entails, and how useful it can actually be. In simple terms, Responsive Web Design can be described as a method of approaching web design with a specific focus on providing optimal experiences – both in terms of navigation and reading, for visitors. This means that whether your audience comes to your website on their computer, tablet, or smartphone, they should be able to read your content, click links and access the information they need as easily as possible.
The primary advantage of responsive web design is that it allows website owners to use a single content source and URL, meaning that you don’t have to design different websites for every device in use today. Why is it Useful? There are a number of reasons why Google, and website owners alike are starting to show their love for Responsive Web Design. Perhaps the first benefit is that this approach is incredibly flexible, allowing content to move freely across various screen resolutions and different devices. Both the images and the grid used are fluid, meaning that no matter where your customers are viewing from, they’re always getting the best experience. Although content may be king, and it is important to think about how your audience will discover your content if you want to improve your search ranking, it’s the experience that your consumers get that ensures your visitors will keep coming back to consume more content.
Responsive web design is largely about providing the best possible experience for your user, regardless of whether they’re logging into your website from a smartphone, computer, or even their smart-TV. Responsive web design accommodates the busy lifestyles that many people struggle with today, from the college student trying to access information on his smartphone, to the professional business man drawing up data on their tablet to prepare for a presentation. Why Google recommends it The biggest positive that Google sees in regards to responsive web design, is that one site has the same HTML, and URL, regardless of the device in question. This makes it far easier for Google’s bots to crawl through, index and organize the content that your website is providing. Compare this to separate mobile sites which come with different HTML and URLs, and you see the amount of extra work Google has to do in order to index various versions of the same website. Google also appreciated Responsive Web Design because the content that lives on a single URL is far easier for users to share, link to, and interact with, than content that exists on a separate site.
For example, imagine deciding to show your friend a link to a mobile site from your smartphone. When they access it from a computer, they will receive a stripped-down version of the page, rather than the optimal user experience that they were expecting.