South African Website Design Company

SUMMARY Responsive Website Design

Ordinary websites are designed with fixed widths, usually 990 pixels wide which ensures that the website looks good on the majority of PC screens and tablets (in landscape mode). A responsive website is one that dynamically changes width (and sometimes layout) to fit the device that the website is being viewed on.


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Why our Responsive Website Design is superior

Most responsive website designers just throw the design into a liquid framework like bootstrap or similar and expect the framework to do all the work for them. There are several glaring problems with this method, namely:

  • A framework isn't intelligent enough to realise when elements in a website are poorly spaced, which they often are in most views when a website uses a liquid (percentage based, instead of pixel based) layout.
  • Your content is the most important thing on your site, so it makes sense to have the design compliment the content. Using frameworks and boilerplates mean that you need to fit the content into the design instead of designing around the content.
  • Images are not optimised for each view. Why should someone viewing a site on their Smart phone with a poor WiFi connection have to load the same size images as someone using a PC?
  • Most frameworks ignore the users on the opposite end of the scale that use widescreen monitors and want to make the most of their screen real estate

The Solution

Our responsive websites use an adaptive static layout which means that we design the website in 5 different views (widescreen, normal screen, tablet in landscape mode, tablet in portrait mode, smart phone in landscape mode, and smart phone in portrait mode) to ensure that spacing is pixel-perfect in every view; layouts are optimised to suit each view (instead of leaving it up to chance), and images are optimised for the screen size it appears on. Additionally we take into account that touch screen devices require the user to use their finger (which isn't necessarily skinny), so hit areas need to be around 40 pixels², and we don't rely on mouseover only technology for dropdowns.

Responsive Website Cost

Responsive websites entail approximately 5 times more work than ordinary websites, and are therefore more expensive. You can get a rough idea for budgting purposes from our latetst pricelist (see link towards the top left corner of this page), but feel free to contact us for an accurate quote.

Responsive Web Design for all Devces.

  • Your website will work on ordinary computer screens, including wide screens. We design a wider version of your website to maximise screen real estate that would ordinarily be wasted.
  • Your website will work on tablets in both landscape and portrait mode. We ensure that menus work properly using touch technology.
  • Your website will work on smart phones in both landscape and portrait mode. Menus work properly using touch technology and lower resolution images are served to the user to increase browsing speed.

Responsive Web Design Process

The length of time it takes to design and build a responsive website depends on the scope of work - it could take as little as 3 weeks or longer than 3 months. If you can tell us exactly what you need done, we can give a more accurate timeline.

Making an existing Website Responsive

Ordinarily, if we take on a job, we will give it a complete overhaul. We design and build it from scratch. We do have exceptions to the rule (for example the Clicks website, and the Kapama Game Lodge website in the example slideshow above), where if the existing website design is satisfactory, we won't redesign, but will still rebuild the website from scratch to ensure proper coding practice and easier maintenance.

Is Responsive Web Design Necessary?

It really depends on your target market and your budget. If your website is aimed at less tech-savvy individuals who are unlikely to view your website on a mobile phone, then a responsive site is probably not necessary. Without responsive technology, users should still be able to view your site on a mobile phone, but they will have to pinch and zoom in order for the text to be legible. So, if you simply don't have the budget, then don't go and get yourself into debt. Stick with yur standard website until you can afford it.

If you want to stay ahead of the game, however, and offer your customers a user friendly experience, regardless of what device they are using, then responsive web design is something you should invest in. Considering the growing number of individuals who surf the web using their smart phones, for most client's, if you can afford it, we would recommend spending the extra cash and getting yourself a responsive website.

In case you are wondering why our own website is not a responsive website, it is because we have been exceedingly blessed with work and have not had time to work on our own material. There are worse problems to have, no?


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