Responsive Vs Adaptive Design | Which Is Best For Your Business?

We are currently living in a digital era where technology is at our fingertips. This is the reason why the number of visits on websites via mobile phones is increasing at a rapid pace. Therefore, it has become vital for businesses to make their websites mobile-friendly. Otherwise, they will end up losing visitors because of not being able to drive as much traffic towards their websites as they want. Now that I have stated the reason as to why businesses should create such website it is time to settle the debate surrounding responsive vs adaptive design principles.

The user interface (UI) design principles behind adaptive web design and responsive web design are quite different. Therefore, it is important for you to know which one of these two will work well for you.

The reason I am writing this blog is that I want to make sure that anyone reading this will understand the difference between responsive and adaptive web design principles. So let’s get down to business, shall we?

Responsive Vs Adaptive Design Principles | An In-depth Analysis

There is no doubt that both responsive and adaptive web designs will improve the user experience. However, both of them are entirely different from each other.

What Is Responsive Web Design?

responsive design and web devices

The content on a responsive website responds perfectly to the varying screen sizes of the user. When a user chooses to view the site on a smaller device such as a tablet or mobile phone, the text and images will adjust accordingly. Hence, allowing web design and development agencies to create an appealing and more streamlined look.s

The reason being that in responsive designs CSS3 media queries are used to move, enlarge, shrink, hide and resize the content. The fluid grid allows a web page to resize its height and width to make it look even more presentable.

All off-the-shelf templates of content management systems (CMS) such as Shopify, Joomla and WordPress have a responsive user interface.

Benefits of Responsive Websites

The demand for responsive websites has been on the rise even since Google rolled out the update of mobile-first indexing.

Responsive Offers You Wider Adoption and Support

Nowadays, most business websites are built on CMS and frameworks. Meaning they come packed with plugins, themes and optimizations that ensure a website is responsive right from the word go.

These websites do not require any adjustments whatsoever. You won’t have to worry about how your website will look on different devices as they work on the plug and play principle.

Complete And Consistent Experience

The layout and content on a responsive website remain true and consistent across all devices. Some users can be lazy, keeping this in mind a business should strive to bring all of their vital information to them.

Furthermore, these websites make it easier for users to share web content, which will amplify the chances of social sharing.

Responsive design requires you to have only one URL for all kinds of devices. This means your SEO experts won’t have to readjust their strategies because they won’t have to make any changes in the web content.

Responsive Sites Load Faster

A responsive site only has to load a single layout that works on all devices, unlike an adaptive website that has to load all possible layouts. This means adaptive websites have to do a lot of loading, which takes extra resources and time.

What Is Adaptive Web Design?

web template website design concept

In adaptive design, a web designer uses different layouts for different screen sizes. Your website’s layout will mainly depend on the screen size of the device that it is supposed to open on.

For example, your products page looks good on iPhone 11 but the same page may look out of place on an iPhone X or even an iPad because of their different sizes.

But how does it work, you ask?

An adaptive website actually detects the device on which it is about to open. It does this to send the pre-set layout for that device. You need tailor-made solutions in order to make an adaptive website work, on contrary to a responsive website where the design flows from screen to screen.

Benefits Of Adaptive Websites

Adaptive website designs allow designers to make changes in the solutions and deliver a user centric experience to the visitors.

Adaptive Design Is A Much Better Choice For E-commerce

Magazines, websites and blogs don’t have to worry much about responsive vs adaptive design practices, particularly the startup and small businesses.

In fact, the idea of using a responsive website for your e-commerce may just backfire here a bit. The reason being that what works on the iPhone, may not work well on an Android phone. The same argument applies to PCs and Macs too.

Best For A Specific Target Audience

You can use adaptive design to target a specific audience in an effective way. For instance, a multi-national company, which has issued mobile tablets or mobile phones of the same model and size to their field technicians can experiment with this design approach. This way they will only have one layout to work with and ask their employees to only use those devices to:

  • Fill out their daily reports
  • Order parts
  • Access product manuals
  • Receive dispatch instructions

Choosing Between Responsive And Adaptive Design

Designing a responsive website is slightly difficult than an adaptive website. It requires you to pay a lot more attention to organisation and CSS if you want to ensure that it renders well on all kinds of devices.

The adaptive web design, on the other hand, requires you to have some pre-set layouts for various devices. It can prove to be a tedious task in the longer run.

As I said before, technology is advancing at a swift rate. Therefore, one cannot be sure as to what kind of device might be launched next. Based on this argument, one may figure that sticking to a responsive website will be wise.

Responsive Vs Adaptive Design | Let Me Make The Choice Easier For You

When To Choose Responsive Web Design

  • If you have created your website on a popular CMS like Shopify, Joomla or WordPress then you should buy a built-in responsive design theme.
  • You should make your website responsive if your aim is to get your website ranked higher on Google. The content on a responsive website, as I said before renders on both templates and mobile phones, resulting in higher mobile traffic.

When To Choose Adaptive Web Design

  • Businesses who want to get their websites customised should hire a web design Nottingham agency to create layouts for various screens and devices.
  • You should go for an adaptive design if your site has various design elements, buttons and a lot of content.

The debate of responsive design vs adaptive design will remain popular for some time. However, this may be because we are yet to find a simple solution to all the maintenance work that adaptive design requires.

I’m sure this blog would have given you some valuable insights into the long-standing debate of responsive vs adaptive design principles. Leave us a comment if you enjoyed reading it.

Intelicle is an innovative web development agency that uses cutting-edge technologies in order to make websites that don’t just look great but perform as per your expectations too.

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