Do you need a new website for tablets? Mobile devices are taking over the internet, with more than 50 percent of all devices accessing the internet being smartphones and tabs.
Whether you run a community organization, or a small business online, your business needs to be accessible through a tablet and a smartphone. If you were to design a website for every device that may visit your website, you will end up with more than 10 websites.
Different resolutions and different devices have different requirements. Blackberry, iPhone, Android, Kindle, Netbook, and more have different requirements. But you do not need all those websites to accommodate the right devices. With affordable web design for tablets, you create a responsive design that adapts to the resolution and size of the device the visitor uses to access your website.
Web design should be simple with the latest advancements. Nowadays, you only need to drag and drop webpage elements, and you are good to go. The challenge comes when you have to keep up with new devices and resolutions.
Mobile-friendly design comes to salvage the situation by delivering a website that responds to the behavior and the environment the user presents. A mobile-friendly website should adapt to the screen size, the platform, and the orientation. If you switch from a laptop to a tab, the content resizes to fit in the smaller screen. If you change the orientation of the device from portrait to landscape, the content re-adjusts again to the new screen. This way, you do not need separate websites for every device that might visit your website.
How does the design do that? Android and iPhone friendly design consists of flexible elements such as grids, images, and layout. Besides changes in size and layout, the website should also adjust to the user preferences. Because you only need one website to meet the needs of all devices, mobile-friendly design comes in handy for all businesses online.
Have you ever tried accessing your website from a mobile device? How does it behave? Depending on the framework and platform on which your device runs, your website should behave different when opened from different devices.
If you do not have different devices, you can check the responsiveness of your website through Google Chrome. To do that, open your website through Google Chrome. From there, press Ctrl + Shift + I, which will open Google Chrome Development Tools. From there, press Ctrl + Shift + M to see how your website appears on tabs, smartphones, and desktops.
There are also tools such as Google Mobile-Friendly test that shows you how your website behaves in different devices. There are different ways to achieve a design that works in different devices such as adaptive design. However, the easiest way to make a website that responds to the needs of every device is to use a design that accommodates an iPad and other tabs. This saves you costs because you do not have to create different websites.
A responsive design ensures that designers, user-interface developers, and web developers do not spend days creating websites for every device and resolution on the market. Business owners and marketers also have an easy time when they design their marketing campaigns. There are many more benefits including:
Website Accessible on Every Device – Instead of a website appearing as if no element is in position, it appears well organized, regardless of the device one uses to open it. Whether you use a 27-inch iMac or a 6-inch cell phone, you will see different elements of the website clearly. Users will enjoy optimal visual pleasure, and also perform some actions on the website. If users can sign for a program on a website through the desktop website, they can still do so through the mobile site.
Elements Resized – Adaptive design resizes elements depending on the size of the screen. However, users can still see the text, images, and other elements on a smaller screen as they would on a larger screen. The fonts and the images remain and are as visible as they should. Tabs-friendly design might make all elements adaptive, or only make some and not others. For instance, the text might respond to screen size, but the graphics might be cut to meet the needs of the new device.
No Redirects – If you have different websites for every device you need to access your website, users will have to be redirected to a website that matches the needs of their device. With a single website that adapts to the needs of the screen, users no longer have to deal with redirects. This makes your website faster to access, and helps you retain your customers. The average customer is not willing to wait for a website to load for longer than 3 seconds. If you take redirects out of the way, you ensure that your website loads faster, and you retain your customers.
Affordable Web Management – Instead of managing two or more websites, you only have a single website to manage. From a cost standpoint, this will be advantageous for you. If you ever need to make changes to your site, you only make the changes once. When updating, you again update a single website. Marketers will find SEO management easy as they only work with a single website.
“A responsive design ensures that designers, user-interface developers, and web developers do not spend days creating websites for every device and resolution on the market.”- CalTech Web
If you design and maintain your business websites, you already know about frameworks. A framework ensures you do not have to code every element of your website. Instead, you only add the elements into an existing structure and you are good to go. These frameworks have come a long way, and now allow you to create a website that responds to different devices.
Bootstrap is one of the common frameworks but, it is by no means the only one. Because most developers and designers use Workflows, technologies such as Bower, Grunt, Git, Gulp, and Node.js have become common. These tools make it easy for developers to use HTML5 and CSS3 to create designs that respond to devices.
When it comes to choosing a framework, your options include:
• Semantic UI
All these frameworks help you create CSS elements that respond to the size, orientation, and platform, of the device. You only need to pick one that meets your needs and you are good to go. But if you are creating a simple church website or a blog, do you really need to start designing from a framework? If your design skills are not advanced, you do not need a complicated design that will cost you money and give you a headache.
If you need a sophisticated website design, and you do not have the skills, you can always outsource. For a simple website design, you can use a website design platform that responds to different devices.
Is it more affordable to design your website or outsource the work? If your design skills are impeccable, and you will likely not make mistakes during the process, you can design your website. The process is simple, especially if you use a web design platform such as WordPress or Squarespace.
However, some design mistakes you make can be costly, and you need to outsource the work to a professional who will get the design right for the first time. You can also outsource part of the design process and design whatever part that remains. This way, you will have enhanced the affordability of your website for tabs.
When working with an experienced web designer, they bring all their expertise and experience, and they may even bring in some ideas that will improve your website. You only need to get a good designer and you are good to go.
Can you design a website with no design skills at all?
If all you need is a simple blog with simple elements, you can use drag-and-drop platforms to create a website. As long as you know how to use the internet, you can design a website using the guides that drag-and-drop platforms provide for you.
If you are just beginning to design websites, there are so many tools to help you get the design right the first time. You do not need to code any line, or deal with sophisticated frameworks. Most web design platforms will promise a lot, but not all of them will deliver the results you need. Your design process should not only consider the present, but also the future. If there are aspects of your website that you need to tweak to meet your needs, you need to consult a professional web designer to find which platform allows you to do the tweaks and updates you need.
For instance, platforms such as WooCommerce and Shopify are best suited for webmasters looking to start an online store. WordPress, Squarespace and Weebly are great when you need to start a content management system. Other platforms such as Joomla and Drupal can be customized into any form of business, but they require special skills in HTML and PHP.
There are many more systems designed for different purposes. When looking at different platforms, check their pros and their cons so that you never end up on the wrong platform.
Your web designer can help you choose a platform that suits your needs. These platforms can be in either of two groups – subscription-based and non-subscription based.
Below are some of the platforms that can help you create an affordable website.
These are platforms that allow you to run your website on your server. You will not lease the platform, but there are fees that you have to pay including themes, plugins, and any additional fees. These platforms include:
Dreamweaver – This was once one of the most popular web design platforms. In the early design days where creating a website required coding bit by bit, Dreamweaver created an interface that made it possible for designers to create pages. Although Dreamweaver has been overtaken by other platforms, it still offers great customizability by allowing designers to convert graphics to HTML.
WordPress – WordPress has taken over the website design world as one of the most popular non-subscription platform. The platform was originally a content management system for those who need to blog with ease. Although it has advanced to offer better services and features, it still offers more support for blogs. It is an open source platform with thousands of developers working to make it better. When using WordPress, you will spend money on a domain, hosting, plugins, and themes. WordPress has so many plugins that bring more features to the platform.
There are plugins for most of the tweaks you need for your WordPress website. You can, for instance, install Yoast SEO to better optimize your site for search engines. There are many more plugins to enhance the functionality of your website. Dreamweaver has tried to keep up with WordPress by introducing extensions, which act like plugins.
Drupal and Joomla – Joomla and Drupal are like a family of non-subscription based platforms that let you manage your blog. However, the platforms are not as popular as WordPress as they do not have as many templates or plugins as WordPress.
Experienced developers will find these platforms better as they are more customizable. If you are just starting in web design, you are better off using WordPress as it is easier to use.
To run your website on these platforms, you need to pay a monthly fee. There may be additional fees to pay, depending on the platform you choose. Some subscription-based services have a free version, which only offers basic features.
Unlike the non-subscription platforms, these platforms offer more technical support, more security, and they may have ecommerce functionality. Some of these services include:
Wix, Weebly, and Squarespace
These platforms come with ready wed design elements. The designs respond to the size and orientation of the device screen used to access the website. They use drag-and-drop design process, which means you only drag and drop elements wherever you need them. Even if you have never designed a website before, you can still design a good-looking website.
Although these platforms allow third-party services, they do not have as many templates and plugins as WordPress. Granted, you are limited on the features you can add to the site. You are stuck with the features that the platform offers without the chance to introduce new features from third-party developers.
If you need new features and customizations, you might have to tweak the HTML code of the pages. Weebly and Squarespace are the best if you need a platform you can tweak using HTML code. Wix is more malleable for advanced designers who can add lines of code to better customize the website.
The main disadvantage of these platforms is that they do not allow you to import your website if you decide to move to another platform. If you ever want to move your business to WordPress, you will have to start from scratch.
Are you looking to start an online store? You need a platform that accommodates high traffic and holds your products. Some of the platforms above can be used as ecommerce platforms, but they may not have all the features you need to run an online store. Some of the most popular platforms include:
WooCommerce through WordPress – If you are running a WordPress website, you can turn it into an eCommerce store by adding the WooCommerce plugin. The plugin introduces credit card processing, and allows you to upload products. It is a great platform for a small ecommerce business. This platform is a great option, but if you have thousands of products, you need platforms such as Shopify.
Magento – Businesses such as Coca-Cola, Nike, and Ford run on Magento. The platform comes with features such as pricing, discounts, collection of data, and a host of extensions to add features to your business. Magento, however, can be quite expensive.
Shopify – This is an affordable alternative to Magento. It is also an easy-to-use platform as it offers hundreds of tutorials to help you through its features and design process. With Shopify, you will pay for a monthly fee and a fee for every transaction.
“Your web designer can help you choose a platform that suits your needs. These platforms can be in either of two groups – subscription-based and non-subscription based.” – CalTech Web