On lazy responsive design and how to make it better

It sucks a bit, right? Not even an extra thought for the most fundamental parts of the user experience such as navigation menus or call-to-actions.

What to do when “responsiveness” is not a selling point anymore

I was happy when I stumbled upon the great article by Benek Lisefski in which he examines what it means to design “responsively” when everyone is doing the basic iteration of responsive design and the responsiveness alone is no longer a selling point.

Benek lists good ways how we can control the user’s experience on tablets or mobile devices in ways that are deeper than just just basic content rearrangements.

  1. Navigation can, and should, be simplified on mobile to allow people faster access to the things they need
  2. Forms (or any other data input) should be broken down into smaller digestible steps for mobile.
  3. Different images or other content can be served up on mobile
  4. What happens to your wide data tables or lists on mobile? PAY ATTENTION TO TABLES!
  5. Page transitions and other animations can be used to make mobile website more app-like. The appearance of speed can be as important as actual speed.
  6. Font-sizes should be tweaked. Size contrast between headings and body copy should be reduced.
  7. Touch gestures should be supported where possible to make interactions that much more intuitive.
  8. Are you considering how your mobile design patterns adapt to the huge range of phone screen dimensions? Consider what happens on a phablet 700px wide? Or on the smallest phones that are still out there with 320px resolution?
  9. How can we use the larger screen space of desktop devices to provide progressive enhancements (as opposed to the mentality of cutting back from the optimal experience).
  10. Tablet design often turns into the forgotten middle child between desktop and mobile. Don’t leave those mid-sized devices out in the cold.

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