The methods of responsive design are of great help to developers as they allow us serving content to the broad spectrum of devices without the need of maintaining separate versions of the website and also without some negative drawbacks to methods of other types like fluid layouts and scaling.
Here are the top 3 mistakes encountered by designers with responsive web design and some strategies to avoid these mistakes are provided.
Mistake 1) Wrapping menus
If a navbar on top of your page is used by you, then it should be snapped by a responsive design to a format which is more compact when there is display of the page on small screen. But the work of this is not always perfect in case the display area is wider compared to the breakpoint but very small for displaying all menu items in one single line. It results in one menu which wraps.
Several ways for solving this problem are there. One is to decrease the item numbers horizontally displayed on the navbar by sorting them in categories and sub-categories. Drop-down items can then be used by you for displaying sub-categories during the selection of a category.
Mistake 2) Using images of fixed width
Areas of content are generally set to a size related to viewport. Therefore when an image of fixed width is wider than area size, there is occurrence of image cropping.
This problem can be avoided by you through the use of relative units for setting the image width or in case a framework like bootstrap supporting it is used by you then you can make use a class of responsive image for example- class="img-responsive".
This is more obscure but what necessarily happens is that when a small viewport displays your layout the bahaviour of any unhandled columns is like rows. This has been marked as a problem as content distortion changes unintentionally your design hierarchy.
There is an obvious solution: just explicitly set the padding, width and height of the element. If its movement is out of position and other elements are covered by it, you can forcefully bring it to where you wish it to be through setting margins and wrapping it in one div.
Avoiding risks with responsive web design
It has turned out that for mobile websites the design has not worked as the magic bullet. But planning more, risks can be avoided by marketers.
Tips to optimize the responsive design sites
- Get outside for testing the real thing: A thing catching many customers is the actual site using experience like a consumer of mobile.
Real user and synthetic monitoring can be of help for testing but nothing is compared to viewing the actual thing.
- Put mobile first: Many solutions are there to adjust grids or page layouts for the screen size of the user but a collapsing grid might become one conversion killer in case it is not correctly done. Designing your grid first for mobile is crucial for ensuring that there is organization of information for small screens. Scaling up is also simpler.
- Incorporate dynamic serving: A critical aspect of the design is dynamic serving changing the HTML code of a website depending upon user device and other factors as well.
- Prioritize your content: Sequencing the content of your application allows brands to deliver significant elements of page like first product details and serve information of rich media at a later time, based upon the time of the user on website and interactions on-page.
Planning helps to avoid mistakes and risks. So well plan your design and test often. By focusing on user engagement it would be ensured by the brands that the goal to improve mobile experience is met actually by responsive web design.