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What Exactly is a Responsive Site, and Why Is It So Important?

You’re probably hearing the term “responsive” in reference to websites with increasing frequency these days. Is responsive design really that important for the success of your site? We hope this post can help to clear up some of the confusion around the topic.

Once upon a time, only desktop computers and laptops existed and all sites had one format—the desktop layout. Then, as mobile phones and tablets were invented and gained popularity, websites usually had three separate settings and the layout would change from desktop, to tablet, to mobile at a certain predefined screen resolution.

The problem with that method is that tablet and mobile screens come is so many sizes that it virtually guarantees someone’s view of your site will be less than optimal. The only reasonable way forward seemed to a site that works at any screen resolution.

How Does a Responsive Site Work?

Without getting too deep into it, a responsive site is built on a grid system and these grids have instructions on how to reflow on different screen sizes. In addition to this, different CSS styles kick in once a screen reaches a certain width. This is why you’ll see responsive sites not only reflow but also get simpler as the screen gets smaller.

Why Responsiveness is a Must

You may have heard that 2016 is the year when mobile traffic finally outpaced desktop traffic on the Internet as a whole. If you have a site that looks the same on a desktop as it does on a phone, this should give you pause. Mobile users have become used to sites designed for mobile and have little patience for navigating a “classic” site on mobile, with all the zooming in and scrolling that entails.

The nice thing is that with the ascent of mobile, almost all website platform have jumped on the responsiveness bandwagon, and you can now easily find a fully-responsive site theme no matter what platform you happen to be on.

Have a question about how to create (or convert) your website to be fully responsive? Contact us today!

The CanSpace Team

CanSpace is Canada's leading domain name registrar and hosting provider. Keep an eye on our blog for expert information around websites and running a business online.

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