Beyond Responsive Design: Tomorrows Technology

by David Landriault (Co-Founder)

There has been a revolution in the design industry and the “mobile first” philosophy that led to responsive design has won.

This ground-breaking design concept has changed everything. Now that we are solidly in the realm of responsive design, where do we go from here? Modern responsive design has to do more than resize a website to fit many devices. It should be a fantastic work of digital art that will act as a showcase for your products and provide a compelling introduction to the business for new visitors as well as a pleasurable experience for regular users on all devices. This article will discuss seven techniques that cutting-edge companies like ours are using to take designs beyond responsive.

1) Smooth Re-flow and Repositioning: Responsive design resizes to fit the screen they are on but not all responsive designs are the same. To go beyond responsive designs, the site must re-flow to prioritize important content and rearrange and optimize it for the appropriate screen where it is being shown. It must do so smoothly when the screen is resized providing a seamless opportunity for users to interact on the phone, tablet or large screen device. It must reposition and resize content and use HTML5 semantics to increase usability and functionality. On a large screen, it should take full advantage of the screen resolution, using large images to immerse the user in a compelling, visceral experience. It must use media queries and responsive image resizing to keep relevant content in view at different screen sizes and resolutions.


2) Dynamic Menus: Responsive designs demand complicated drop-down menus that will utilize media queries to provide a separate more “user-friendly” navigation for mobile while still maintaining the feel of the original site navigation.


3) Animations and Transitions: Make genuinely cutting-edge websites we must also make use of techniques like transparencies, animation, transitions, parallax, and other high-end design techniques. In this world of media-rich design, we can create a beautiful and functional site that will also hold up as an independent work of art while adding to the sites core goals. The intent is to grab the attention of visitors and encourage them to interact with the design by creating a compelling intellectual and tactile experience without interfering with or overshadowing the site’s content.


4) HTML5 Markup Structure, Syntax, and Semantics: The markup, syntax, and semantics must be carefully designed to meet the current standards of HTML5 while enabling users of older browsers to access the content. Clean semantic markup is a cornerstone of HTML5 web development because it is what makes the site accessible, searchable, and increases internationalization and improves interoperability of the design.


5) Architecture and UX Design: User experience design or UX is the process of enhancing customer satisfaction and loyalty by improving the usability and enjoyment provided by the website. User experience includes the interface, graphics, physical interaction, and the automated processes involved in designing and using a website. Website architecture is an approach to the design and planning of sites that includes technical, aesthetic and functional criteria. These must both be considered in modern designs. During this critical phase, we must plan the information architecture for desktop viewing, tablets, and smart-phones and plan intuitive navigation schemes, collect site content, develop a content inventory, determine the website’s organizational structure, design for utility links, and many other factors. We also plan for interaction and usability of the model across all of these platforms.


6) Javascript Development: You must take care to thoroughly and adequately develop the Javascript and the structure needed to support the code and link it to the site.


7) Image Optimization and Code Minification: To further speed load times we compress the images as much as possible without losing quality. We also minify all of the code and use other strategies like proper scripting placement and multiple sources of code to keep the code light and lightning fast.




These seven areas are just the beginning of a complex but worthwhile process that must be navigated to create a genuinely inspiring responsive design of the future. The good news is that sites like this are available today from a few design firms like ours. Use of these techniques, along with fantastic content, takes the responsive design concept to a place where few have seen before. Businesses, in particular, are seeing a fantastic success rate with sensitive sites designed with their business needs in mind and aided by HTML5 and other responsive technologies. For more information, please contact us for a free estimate.

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