Responsive and Mobile Design Are they Different?

Before starting the project of creating a new website you may have done some research and come across the terms and . What do these terms mean, and is there a difference?

There is a Difference

Yes, there most certainly is! Responsive Web Design means that the content on your website stacks differently according to the browser width. It means that you can view the same website on any size device and it will look as though it was designed for that screen size. Mobile Web Design, on the other hand, means that your website was created for mobile devices only.

Which is Better?

Responsive Design blows mobile design out of the water. Let me tell you why:

  1. It’s more cost effective
  2. It’s less maintenance
  3. It’s better for organic search results
  4. It’s just better practice

Would you rather build one website or two? I think one. Who wants to work harder, right!? Building a solely mobile site means that you need two websites because you also need one that is dedicated to desktops as well. Conversely, by building a responsive site you’ll probably reduce your cost because it’s less work to build just one site, and you’ll perform better in search results because search engines expect website to be responsive. Does it make sense now why it’s better practice?

So how do I know if I’m using a mobile or responsive site?

If you’re on a desktop computer scale the width of your browser window. If the content responds to the width, you’re using a responsive website.

If you’re on a mobile device, look at the URL. Because mobile sites need a different domain than their desktop counterparts, mobile sites will have a different URL. Most of the time mobile websites will be prefixed with the letter “m”. For example would be a mobile site.

This site is responsive, as are all of the websites we build at Motate Media. It’s really an art to create a website that is not only compatible, but that looks good on all screen sizes. There is a lot more that goes into it than one may think, but in the end it’s worth it because it will optimize your users experience.