Typographic Balance in Responsive Design

Letters come down to the most basic form of typography and each letter should be studied and nuances appreciated.

With all the focus on responsive design and frameworks, a lot of site design tends to forget about the basics, the content inside this system. They start ignoring the smaller stuff which isn’t even details, but more so essentials. 

Paul Rand’s and Jan Tschichold’s type specimen book

Whats the point of having a well thought out responsive system that works at every screen size but never actually works from a typographic point of view. The reliance on boxes and columns in a grid to direct traffic and flow is pretty heavy currently, but the design must not forget that letters and their basic horizontal and vertical typographic lines convey direction and form just as much.

Refine down to the appearance of a letter and its contribution to a layout.

Letters, words, lines all make up the foundation of typography in a document and are generally overlooked on the web. The use of placeholder text reduces typography to nothing more than a 4 sided mass, a hollow square. Sure its good to visualize layouts and forms like that but we must experiment with the actual forms of words and letters after that.

Web design tools are a critical part of the responsive web design procedure. The aim of using a responsive layout is to make the website work on any type of device, but without mass testing it’s not possible to know for sure how the site is conducting in different situations. Responsive web design tools word consists of a mix of flexible grids, images and layouts and an intelligent use of CSS media queries. When the end-user switches from their laptop over to their iPad, the website being looked should automatically switch to image size, particular resolution and scripting abilities.

The impact of responsive web design on your business

More and more people are using mobile devices, like smartphones and tablets, to access your content, you need a strategy to communicate with them effectively and offer them a great experience.

Statistics on mobile usage and adoption

The mobile market is increasingly important for every website owner. According to a recent study from Pew Research Center, 58% of American adults have a smartphone.

A surprisingly large number — 34% of cell internet users — go online mostly using their phones, and not using some other device such as a desktop or laptop computer.

Google’s mobile path to purchase report shows how in our constantly connected world, consumers rely on smartphones more than ever to help them shop for products and services. Consumers research on mobile websites throughout the purchase process and they spend more than 15 hours per week on mobile research.

Responsive web design and E-commerce

In almost all cases, the best mobile strategy when building a new website is to use responsive web design. Responsive web design is an approach to web design aimed at building websites that adapt their layout automatically to the screen size of the visitor. This means that a website owner only needs to have one site built for both their desktop and mobile users. The goal is to provide an optimal experience across a wide range of devices.

With a responsive design, users have access to a functional and accessible website on every device, which leads to higher consumer satisfaction.

A responsive website can also help improve your SEO campaigns since you don’t have to promote different websites for mobile and desktop users. Since last year Google has also been displaying mobile-friendly tags next to search results which pass their mobile-friendly test. Furthermore, Google recently announced that mobile-friendly-ness is becoming a factor in the mobile search results. Starting April 21st, Google is updating their search ranking algorithm to favour mobile-friendly sites.

Some companies have shared their data about the impact of responsive design on their traffic and revenue.

  • The e-commerce store O’Neill Clothing found that a responsive redesign of their website resulted in a major increase in conversion rates and revenue growth on mobile devices. They saw a 65.7% conversion rate increase on iPhone/iPod, a 101.2% revenue growth on iPhone/iPod, a 407.3% conversion rate increase on Android devices and a 591.4% revenue growth on Android devices. source

  • The online shop Skinny Ties shared a similar success story after an important responsive redesign of their website. They saw a 42% revenue growth on all devices, a 13.6% conversion rate increase, a 377.6% revenue growth on iPhone and a 71.9% conversion rate increase on iPhone. source

  • Also for a content focused website, like the Regent College website, a responsive design can lead to impressive metrics. In the first 8 months after the launch of their new website they noticed 99% increase in unique visitors, a 77% increase in pageviews and a 63% increase in online applications. source

So, if more and more users are using their mobile devices to search and make purchases online, you have to cater to that audience by having a mobile-friendly site.

At G-Design all our recent projects use responsive web design and we build websites with a mobile first approach. When the Toulouse School of Medicine asked G-Design to technically steer an online scientific magazine for students, we build a responsive website to distribute the magazine. As soon as the first issue came out, this choice had proved more than justified: the magazine was launched as a scientific conference was taking place and more than 40% of the visitors on that day were using a tablet or mobile phone!

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Responsive logos and abstraction in design

Jason Kottke:

The reason why those particular logos work responsively is because they each have abstract representations that work on that meaningful emotional level. You see that red Levi’s tag or Nike swoosh and you feel something. I think companies are having to design logos in this way more frequently. Contemporary logos need to look good on freeway billboards, on letterhead, as iOS icons, and, in the case of the Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest logos, affixed to tiny tweet/like/pin buttons.

(via kottke.org via Ministry of Type)
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