Mobile technology has been developing for many years with new devices being introduced on a regular basis. Trends can shift rapidly, particularly in key markets like laptops and mobile phones. Changes have a big impact on websites and the type of experience that users can expect.
For years many companies focused on offering mobile versions of their websites, but focus has now shifted to responsive designs that adapt to suit the device they are being viewed on.
Mobile devices are setting new standards for website designers and making their jobs slightly more challenging. You now need to consider how things will look when viewed on screens of different sizes and resolutions. A responsive design is important, especially when you consider that the number of searches done on mobile devices is now topping the number of those done on desktop computers. People like to browse the web when they’re on the move, so sites need to be accessible and functional.
Websites that aren’t responsive can be penalised, both by users and search engines. People aren’t going to continue trying to use a site on a mobile phone or tablet if they have to continuously scroll and zoom. This detracts from the experience and makes them more likely to go elsewhere. Designers need to be increasingly conscious of different platforms and ensure that websites will adjust automatically to suit them.
The challenge for designers gets even harder when you consider that the technology sector never stands still. There is always some form of change occurring, whether it is new innovations, consumer trends or environmental complications. As a result you need to stay engaged with your website and be able to make changes as and when necessary. Where once you could keep the design the same for years without any negative reactions now you need to keep it fresh, up to date and user friendly.
Website design is set to face further change with the boom in wearable technology. Wearables are growing at an amazing rate and show no sign of slowing down. It is an easy leap to assume that development will lead to the point where internet searching can be done on all kinds of wearable tech, meaning sites need to be even more dynamic and versatile.
Mobile technology has rewritten the rules for web design but alongside the challenges there are also a wide range of opportunities to be found. Innovative designs are more appreciated now than ever before and sites can find great rewards from increasing their functionality. The journey is far from finished and it will be exciting to see how things develop further.