7 Myths of the Responsive Web, Debunked

By James Knutila on Monday, August 05, 2013

7 Myths of the Responsive Web, Debunked

There are plenty of skeptics of responsive design -- and that's a good thing. The evolution of web use has sparked a great debate about the best approach to building sites, and ultimately, designers and developers benefit from this exchange of ideas. But as with any topic on the web, there are a lot of misconceptions out there. We've taken a moment to debunk some of the most common myths of the responsive web.

1. Responsive is just about mobile

It's true that mobile is important, but not necessarily more than any other device or screen. Designing responsively is about delivering a great web experience to all touchpoints, mobile included.

2. People want a unique mobile experience

People don't just want a unique experience on mobile, they want the best web experience. Your customers will be happiest when you deliver the best amount of content and features the fastest.

3. Responsive sites are too slow

When built the right way (mobile-first, server-side, etc.), responsive sites are fast. Load times are incredibly important to your customers; responsive gives you the control to make your site as fast as possible.

4. Responsive web design takes more time, money and code

It's true that starting to build responsively is an investment, but the benefits more than outweigh the costs. Consider the alternative: you'll need someone to build your desktop site, and maintain the content. Next, you might build a mobile site with different features, so you'll need someone to build that site and maintain the content. Next, you repeat this plan for a tablet site. You can see where this is heading, and it's not a sustainable direction. Responsive let's you take a simpler path, one that will save time, money, and code over the life of your site.

5. Responsive is only for big brands

More and more big brands are going responsive, with very cool results. But the rapid evolution of web usage impact businesses of all sizes. Deliver a better web experience to your customers, and enjoy a huge advantage over your competitors. As an added bonus, the SEO benefits are huge: just ask Google what they think of responsive.

6. You have to test on every device

Unless you’ve got thousands of devices on your desk (pics or it didn’t happen), you can’t QA your site on every possible screen. But you should be make sure your site works on as many devices as possible, and that’s precisely the point of designing responsively.

7. Responsive is just the newest fad

Responsive is increasingly popular, but it’s no fad. The principles of responsive, including media queries, have been around for quite a while. More importantly, responsive is the best approach to designing for the future of web consumption, and good solutions don’t go out of style.

Consider these 7 myths officially debunked. As more sites explore the switch to responsive, more questions will be asked, and the debate will continue. Have you come across any responsive myths that need debunking?

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