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Developing For Mobile - Three Ways To Do It



16 Jan 2015


7 minute read

Web design is the most crucial aspect that helps website owners to grab user's attention and keep them engaged with the site. But, an out-of-style web design will fail to bring in good traffic and will eventually make your site doom to failure. Well, observing the rapid pace at which web trends keep on varying it's not easy for a site owner to cope up with all the trends. However, it is imperative to make your site boast a captivating and functional design.

With incessant advancements happening in the web world and mobile technology, today, we've multiple devices with different platforms, screen size, hardware etc. And responsive web design (RWD) and adaptive designs have become an integral part of a website, as they enable users to access any site via different devices. But irrespective of the changes in the website production process, it's success still depends on how users perceive the website. And so, it is important to have a site that boasts a user experience design.Since, every UX (user experience) is different from the other, you'll have to find a way to render the best UX. Wouldn't it be better if we let the users do the guesswork themselves? In simple words, let users decide on the sort of web design they're seeking. You can have the control over the creative process, and give users the ability to fiddle with your website display. But that's not the agenda of our post. In fact, we will discuss about the most popular approaches that have been adopted by users to meet their needs to access sites on devices with different display capabilities. 


Responsive Web Design (RWD)

With the increase in number of Smartphones and several other web-enabled devices, today, more and more users access sites through their mobile devices. And this trend is expected to continue in the coming years. And so, optimizing websites for diverse mobile devices is a good choice. This is where responsive designs come to your rescue. According to RWD, a site must adapt itself according to the device screen sizes – on which it is being accessed.

The concept of responsive web design helps to simplify multiple-column layout into a few column layouts automatically – on the basis of the available screen size. What's more, as opposed to the conventional graphic designs, the RWD approach separates the web content from the presentation. Moreover, in order to make the design respond to any display, developers can use CSS3 media queries. Responsive web design has become an all-embracing term for making your website work well on devices with low-resolution. This approach relies on flexible and fluid grids.


Adaptive Designs (or Client-Side Adaptive Approach)

Adaptive design helps in enhancing the user experience that responsive web design doesn't offer. Though responsive layouts performs better compared to adaptive layouts, but in a few cases such as the ones where you need to build complex apps, choosing an adaptive approach will prove beneficial to you. This approach gives better control over website design. With this approach, you just need to design for some specific viewports and web browsers only.

The adaptive design approach isn't about designing web content that adapts to a device; but instead it count a device's functionality to deliver an optimal user experience – on the basis of how the content is being consumed. It is based on two approaches – one where  mobile-responsive layout is delivered at the client side, and second one is where the server detects the devices (that are being used by the users) and accordingly loads the correct template. This approach doesn't require you to build a website from the very beginning, and rather allows you to build on existing content. You'll need good knowledge of JavaScript for using this approach. Lastly, adaptive design depends on predefined screen sizes.


Adjustive Web Designs

This is an ideal user experience (UX) element that helps to meet the expectations of all types of mobile devices. Adjustive Web Designs is a good choice, when it comes designing a site with a feature that lets a user to adjust layout as per their own requirements. It contains some of the basic key aspects of adaptive design, and abides by the responsive approach to present the web content that auto-adjusts to the targeted screen sizes.

For instance, accessing a few UI elements on the large-screen mobile devices (like tablets etc.). But, this could be a daunting task, as the fix-positioned website header or any other auto-adjusted responsive UI control might not guarantee easy accessibility to a user.

With the Adjustive web design approach, you can make your site users to adjust the most important UI elements on their mobile devices, at a location that is easily accessible. This will help you get a more intuitive and engaging UI.


The user behavior and web trends keeps on varying. And thus, it becomes needful to ensure that your website relies upon a designing approach and frameworks that help you in establishing successful presence in the market. We've discussed about three main approaches and their impact on user experience (UX), make sure to choose one that best suit your project needs. 

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