When it comes to web design, there are a lot of choices you’re going to have to make. Some of them will have a large impact on functionality while others will influence the appearance and layout of your website. When it comes to functionality, one choice you’ll likely consider is whether or not your website should be adaptive or responsive. If you’re unfamiliar with those terms, the first thing you need to do is learn what they are. Responsive web design (often referred to as RWD) is when the CSS code is changed so that a website will adapt to the layout as well as the operating system of any kind of browser. RWD is focused mainly on ensuring that people using mobile devices are able to have an optimal browsing experience. However, not every website makes use of RWD and many of those are still successful, which means RWD is not exactly necessary. If you’re on the fence about whether or not you should make use of RWD, you need to consider several factors about your intent and goal for your site.
Will You Be Blogging?
If your website is going to focus mainly on your blog, it may be a better idea for you to avoid using RWD. Blog layouts don’t always translate well through RWD, which means that a scaled down version could be tough to view and hard to read. Being as your blog is meant to be read easily, this is obviously a bad thing for you. There’s nothing wrong with sticking with conventional web design, and tons of bloggers have done just that and gone on to become very successful.
Are You an e-Retailer?
If your website focuses on e-commerce, you’re going to want to be make sure that your website is fully viewable no matter what kind of device people are using. People love to be able to shop even when they’re on the go, and opting to make use of RWD means that you’re giving them that opportunity. Think about it: do you want people to have to wait until they’re home and in front of the computer before they can spend money? If you’re out for profit, the obvious answer is no; you want them to be able to spend money on your site whenever they feel like it and RWD is going to make that happen.
Does It Make Sense?
Not every site needs to have RWD. In some cases, it just doesn’t make sense. For example, if the layout of your site is fairly complicated, chances are pretty good that it won’t translate well through RWD anyways. And if your site is image heavy, this could also cause some issues through RWD. You can always make the necessary script changes and preview how your site will look with RWD, but don’t be surprised if there are some layout issues that come with it being scaled down. If that’s the case, it might be a better option to just steer clear of RWD completely.