—-> Responsive Web Design and the Acceptability Threshold: What You Should Know
2012 will be remembered as the year the mobile web emerged. In support of this bold proclamation, a recent survey found that the share of smartphones has surpassed the 50% mark in the US. If you own or manage a website for your business or organization it is imperative that you invest in the mobile user experience. Enter Responsive Web Design, a new approach to building websites that optimizes the user experience across all platforms and devices. RWD truly is an elegant solution to a complex problem in that it addresses the need for accessibility using a single-source of data. The concept and drudgery of having to create multiple versions of a website is now as dated as the VHS.
But before making the decision to go all out RWD be forewarned – although indeed an elegant solution it does not imply that it is a perfect one. In order to embrace RWD you must accept the concept of Acceptability Threshold.
This concept acknowledges the reality that RWD comes with certain inherent headaches. Although RWD enhances the user experience across multiple mobile devices, thereby greatly increasing usability and visitor satisfaction, it can also lead to imperfections, particularly in regards to what we call the ‘in-between’ views. The concept of ‘pixel-perfect’ must be thrown out the window – the days of Flash-based control of display are gone forever. Instead, site owners must first understand and then embrace the acceptability threshold.
OK, so what exactly is the acceptability threshold? Let’s define it:
Acceptability Threshold: The minimum level of acceptance of imperfection a website owner will tolerate in order to market the site with maximum confidence.
Not making sense? Think about acceptability threshold as a percentage. We all desire the things we buy to be 100% perfection at the time of the purchase. After all, it is common sense that we will not drive off the car lot with the doors missing (unless you are into that kind of thing) or move into a new home while the roof is still under construction. But would you accept that car if the satellite radio was not yet activated? Would you go ahead and move your family into that house if the landscaping crew was still laying sod in the backyard? The question is, what will you accept? What is your acceptability threshold for making such decisions?
A Website by perception is no different. Yet it is completely different. Often times, we see the unfounded belief that a website cannot launch until everything is 100% completed. Again, this makes sense in regards to obvious concerns. Does it function? Do the pages load? Do the images display? Are there obvious errors or typos. From a traditional desktop-only viewpoint, the acceptability threshold was fairly straightforward – a website is either done or it is not. A solid QA process was the solution. Do a little cross-browser compatibility testing, content review, load testing, W3C and 508 compliance testing and you’re good to go. But with RWD, things are not so black and white.
For starters, the fact that RWD sites are built using a grid ensures that that the website will display differently on different devices. Although this is the greatest benefit of RWD it can also be its biggest weakness. The layouts of responsive web designs are mostly fluid which is why designers do not have much control on how the ‘in-between’ design will look like. Also, it is quite time consuming for the designers to display all the replicas in advance. Designers do their best to show both wireframes and mock-ups for multiple layouts i.e., smartphone, tablet and desktop. If the layouts are approved, only then is the responsive web designing strategy is implemented.
disadvantages of responsive web design
Secondly, the constant updates to browsers, API’s and operating systems, pose a particular challenge for designers and developers working with RWD. Your new RWD site might look awesome on most browsers when it launches, but ignore version updates and before you know it you will be hearing from Sally in sales that the site is not looking too hot on her Blackberry.
Third, factor in the staggering proliferation of mobile devices entering the marketplace created by several manufacturers using competing operating systems and you can begin to see how quality assurance can become an ongoing challenge. Here at DeepBlue, we have multiple devices that we use to test RWD – everything from an 80″ HDTV, Mac desktops & laptops, a few pc’s, iPads (iPad 1 & 3), Nook, Kindle Fire, and of course, iPhones (4, 4s and 5) and other Android based phones. RWD is every bit an art as it is a science. We literally test all of the afore-mentioned devices to ensure that the experience is optimal for each device. Sometimes we miss things (yes, we are human). I got a call recently from a client irate about discovering that their new RWD site was not displaying properly on the iPhone 5 in landscape mode using Chrome mobile browser v2.0. Although the fix was simple it required somebody to actually visit the site using an iPhone 5 under those specific conditions to discover the issue in the first place (reminds me of the tree falling in the forrest and making a sound story). The fact is, no one thought about it until somebody stumbled upon it. This occurrence made me ponder projections into the future. What will happen when somebody visits the website using the new iPad mini and there are some display issues? Despite the fact that the site was launched well ahead of the iPad mini’s announcement, it is not inconceivable – nay, it is almost predictable – that I will get that call in the weeks to come. After all, the promise of RWD is that it creates the ideal user experience for ALL devices. Right? Yes. No. Maybe.
RWD is an exciting evolution in web development in the mobile era, but it is not perfect. The solution for website managers is to ensure that their site is consistently tested ongoing and that their acceptability threshold remains consistent. A rule of thumb I like to use is 95%, meaning that the website displays optimally on at least 95% of all devices and view modes. To insist on 100% is simply not practical, and in a way it defeats the purpose of RWD in the first place. Understand the acceptability threshold. Live it, love it, earn it.
Responsive Web Design (RWD) is a device-independent UI (user interface) design philosophy that aims to develop and deliver an optimized website experience on devices with different widths and different resolutions: PC, notebook, tablet, smart phone, etc. It is a technology using which web designers code the style sheets of the website in a manner that its layout magically adjusts itself to more comfortably fit the width of the browser in which it is being viewed.
What Challenges/Problems Does Responsive Web Design Solve?
Upgrade the mobile and tablet viewing experience of your website visitors – no vertical or horizontal scrolling.
No separate websites to be designed and maintained for mobile users.
Fluid grids work as an extension of liquid layouts – albeit in a more robust manner fitting elements into huge and small screens effortlessly.
Style Separated from Content – Since responsive web design works through CSS media queries, you get the advantage of content management abilities of your CMS of choice. We provide Drupal and WordPress based content-managed responsive sites.
Blurb Text –> Design & Copywriting
A beautiful website can speak volumes about your brand in the blink of an eye, but the appeal can be lost if the website just doesn’t work right. We put the customer experience at the core of your design, focusing on ease of use along with alluring aesthetics and engaging content that results in clean, effective design.
Blurb Web Design:
At Dotlogics, we build hand-crafted solutions
that merge smart design, leading-edge
technology and your unique business goals
into one stunning Website. Our amazing team
of geniuses makes it all happen like magic.
If you are searching for a top web design firm to create an excellent and effective site for your business or organization, then you are in the right place. We at Dotlogics are devoted to creating the best user experiences and producing creative and engaging content for every client. No matter the size of your company, if you wish to compete in today’s marketplace or make a difference in the world, an exceptional website is essential. Your online image is one of your most precious assets, and we are a top design agency because we know how to construct a site that will wow your customers without causing financial distress. Each and every site we make is one of a kind and tailored to the business or organization that it represents.
The best web design companies offer unique and innovative plans created with purpose and value in mind and Dotlogics is no different. Our goal is to provide our clients with cutting-edge technology combined with astonishing looks and functionality. Because of our dedication to providing clients with outstanding service, Dotlogics is consistently ranked as one of the best web design agencies by design professionals. We love being recognized by our peers, but the best acknowledgement is that our customers unfailingly say that we are the best web design company that they have worked with.
Dotlogics is based in New York, and we employee some of the best web design professionals in the area. Every employee brings a unique design philosophy to their projects. There are many top web design agencies in NY, but we believe that we are the best web design agency because we match individual designers with projects that accurately reflect their talents. This approach allows for the creation of distinctive web pages. The designers work carefully to create a web presence that is true to the values of the client and accurately represents what the client needs out of a website. Our sites are also user friendly, easy to navigate, and easy to maintain. We offer quick turn-around and industry-leading support that never fails to impress out clients.
We always put our customers first, and we always produce top quality products that satisfy the customer’s needs. Our goal is to give you something better than you thought possible, and we are proud to say that we reach that goal each and every day. We give our clients incredible sites and amazing value, and that is why we are one of the best web design agencies around. Don’t wait around; we could be working on your new site today. Contact us below for a quote. Let us give you a top of the line web presence today!
First impressions are important, we get that in spades. Stanford scientists recently reported that nearly 50% of people rank a website’s design as the number 1 factor for determining the credibility of an organization, and since 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual, compelling design is one of the most important aspects of your business’s arsenal.
…Yes, we think stats are cool.
Web Design and Branding Blurb Text
Your website design along with the rest of your branding is the mirror image of your business on the internet and on the market in general. Main features of design & branding are uniqueness and recognition. Even if the company is well-organized, a poor design & brand expression can ruin everything. That’s why it is always important to implement outstanding design and maintain unique brand expression.
Take a look at our process
Company: Siegel Construction
Business type: Medical & Dental
Timeframe: 2 Month
Total re-branding. Including:
• Logotype and corporate style
• Printing materials
• Magazine Advertising
Step 1: Research
This step includes industry research, competition research, marketing approach determination and gathering ideas. It helps us choose the right direction on the way to smart and unique brand expression. We know how important this is to make a research on trends to understand the audience’s expectations in order to be able to exceed them.
Step 2: Brand Expression
As the main objective for this stage we see the choice of the best out of different visual combinations that could represent the brand on the whole. Client’s selected option becomes the basis for the rest of the brand expression (i.e. company colors, website design, printed materials design, even the slogan and overall company representation).
Step 3: Website Design
We care much about the match between the overall brand style and website design. In all incarnations including the website we tend to create clear, simple, smart and consistent brand style. In turn the website itself must not be just an attractive informational web resource; it also must be useful and interesting, sort of the online image for the real company.
Step 4: Printing materials
Printing materials such as: brochures, postcards, folders, envelopes, calendars, flyers, posters, magnets, t-shirts etc – it all should repeat the general brand identity. By the end of complete branding & design process Comrade Web Agency issues a brand book which includes all the brand materials and comments regarding the rules of their use.
Step 5 – Release.