Imagine yourself commuting to work. You need access to the bus ride information. You log into the app from your mobile device but the screen resolution is not large enough for you to read the schedules. You click on to the map to see the route but it gives you a long-distance view. You try zooming in but it is awkward. These signs indicate that the webpage you are accessing is not a responsive one. It is fit to use for one particular device type. The business did not keep in mind mobile and tablet users, and focused only on a niche audience, using medium and large-sized desktop computers.
A responsive web page is one that can be accessed comfortably from different devices. Responsive web pages have back-end coding and technology that adjusts the layout of the page on various devices. Responsive testing services will check software performance on multiple devices.
One would imagine a responsive web page is only of value to users and businesses as the more devices the software is adaptable to, the wider is the outreach. However, there are also disadvantages connected to the responsiveness feature.
We list both the pros and cons of a responsive web page:
- Businesses save costs if their webpage is responsive as they do not have to build a separate page for mobile and tablet devices.
- Content and image updates are made in one place instead of multiple pages.
- Users have a good experience. The text is easy to read.
- It is easy for users to select buttons and icons on the webpage as they are resized according to the device.
- Images compliment the screen size and can be viewed without difficulty.
- Responsive web design is SEO friendly. All social sharing links are connected to a single URL. As the content on the static site is the same as that on the mobile site, search engines do not have to crawl both.
- Design and development costs are reduced. Only 3 different sets of CSS styles are needed for front-end development. Two sets of designs are enough for a responsive web page interface.
- The loading time of a web page may go up. Not all CSS that is used for development is required for every user. This is seen mostly in the case of downloading images. Slow load times frustrate and drive away users.
- Building a responsive web site is more time consuming especially if an existing non-responsive web page is to be modified to make it responsive. As time is money, it is reasonable to raise a question on the cost-saving merits of responsive web pages.
- When web components are scaled down for mobile compatibility, some pages may become inaccessible. This limits the information a user can view on a web page. If a mobile site is separate from the static one, the user will have full access to the website.
- Users might have to scroll for long since the website content is stacked vertically. Navigation can be tedious. The user may miss important information or find it hard to reach items of interest.