Why Content is Like Water: The Importance of Responsive Design


Over the last few years it has become common practice for websites to be responsive. Responsive design allows for the content of a website to respond to its environment or device. The picture above shows a series of common devices on which you might view a website. It is now the general standard for websites to be as easy to use on one of those devices as it is on any other device. In the past, when responsive design was not prevalent, it was common to find websites that did not adapt or respond to multiple devices. 

As the Internet and access to the Internet evolves, the style and design of websites must change to keep up. An unresponsive website would show on your smartphone in the same way that it is shown on your desktop. In some cases, it might be smaller to fit the phone, but in many cases, you would need to zoom and scroll through the site to find basic features such as navigation, search, and any buttons or links that will help access the entire site. With the continued increase of mobile devices, responsive design is the necessary standard for websites.

To represent responsive design, Brooklyn based designer, Josh Clark, memorably adapted the famous Bruce Lee quote: 

You put water into a cup, it becomes the cup.
You put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle.
You put it into a teapot, it becomes the teapot.”

What does this mean? If you think of your content on a website as water, and pour it from one device to another – the water remains the same, but the shape, environment, and view of the water is changed per device.

A responsive design is important for any individual or organization’s website for a variety of reasons including, but not limited to:

  • Staying ahead or in-line with the competition;
  • Lowering costs and staying cost affective;
  • Managing and updating one site that affects many representations/devices;
  • Improving search engine rankings by offering mobile-friendly sites; and
  • Targeting a wider group and providing a better experience for users who use the Internet with multiple devices.

Function1 prides itself with continuing to create striking responsive designs for websites across various industries.  Read about some of our success stories in the following blog posts:

For more information on Function1’s offerings, and for a quote for a responsive website design, contact us at info@function1.com.

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