Responsive web design (RWD) is more than just a web design trend, it’s become a web design requirement. In order for your website to be properly experienced by every segment of your target audience, you need to design for the devices they use. This means creating websites that optimize for smartphones and tablets of nearly every size. A great RWD uses flexible images, fluid layouts and media queries to achieve a great design and user experience no matter how it is sized. Here are 10 great examples of RWD from across the web. When clicking through the sites, be sure to resize the windows to see how they respond!
When Starbucks marketers began to realize that many of their customers were accessing their website via mobile devices, they wasted no time in developing a responsive site. The website is now easy to navigate no matter how you access it and the sophisticated design perfectly embraces the Starbucks signature look.
The company went through a major rebranding last year and that included the launch of this clean, modern, responsive website. The minimalist design transforms beautifully across platforms and it is a perfect fit for a brand set on creating a product line of such diverse devices.
Kids love Disney and parents love keeping their kids busy with smartphones and tablets. It only seems natural that a website dedicated to the entertainment of children and parents should be easily accessed on handheld devices. This site is great because the big pictures and video aren’t sacrificed when the page is scaled down.
It’s great to see a traditional institution like Harvard embrace such a modern web design. Their responsive site is clean, easy to navigate, and fits well within the university’s brand asthetic.
News sites often have a difficult time with responsive design due to the overwhelming amount of content to deal with. With some careful decisions regarding grids, Time managed to create a minimalistic website that is readable on all platforms. This is especially important for news sites that want to cater to their readers on-the-go.
It's not an easy task to make a blog readable on even the smallest of devices, but Smashing Mag manages to pull it off. This website is very fun to resize because the designers have truly thought about the design grid at every single window size. The result is a beautiful, readable blog that doesn’t sacrifice any of the site’s original design.
It’s a smart move for Mozilla to have a responsive website to advertise the responsive capabilities of their browser. Instead of just saying that their Firefox browser is fluid and responsive, they prove that they know what they’re talking about.
8. Food Sense
This food blog was one of the first to incorporate a responsive design into their website. Even though its been a few years since it launched, the Food Sense website is still one of my favorite examples of beautiful responsive design.
This website, built for the 2012 election, was built with the mobile user in mind. The responsive site was the perfect way to communicate with the tech-savvy younger generation that helped re-elect Obama for his second term.
Here is a great example of how a lot of content and navigation can be scaled down on a mobile device. The full-width site has a ton of navigation tabs, but on a mobile device, only the important tabs are displayed while the main navigation disappears into a friendly accordion menu.
Just for fun!
Web design is all about creating a place for your audience to find and connect with your brand online. Because more and more people are accessing the web from their mobile devices, you need to make sure that the user experience on your site is seamless no matter what device is being used. Responsive web design is a great way to ensure that mobile optimization.