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Questions to Clarify the Need of a Mobile App or a Responsive Site
responsive web design
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Mobile is the trending future technology. With mobile searches continuously increasing and surpassing the desktop searches, it is clear that all the sites must go responsive. However, there is an interesting debate between the responsive layouts and the in-app content via native apps. Check out how you need to present your site on smart gadgets for mobile search users, as suggested by Kennesaw web Design.


Value of a Native App

Smartphone users depend on native apps for using popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter etc. As the native applications run on a local operating system, these apps make the processing a lot smoother. The apps also follow UI guidelines, keeping the data consistent and naturally assumptive. Users have the basic knowledge to use sliding menus and tab bars.

Many publishers have apps available on the Google Play store and iOS covering blogs, social networks and webapps. Large sites such as Twitter and Facebook get more value from native apps compared to small sites.

Both are useful and preferred by end-users; however the only debate is, if a website functions better as a mobile application or as a responsive design.


Fully-Responsive Websites: An Over View

Responsive web design is a good thing. Web designers will not have to make anything extra to make a site go responsive. However, in terms of native apps, there are a few things you need to consider. Responsive sites are only limited to the browser’s rendering engine, meaning limited animation and reliance on the smartphones. On the other hand, native apps give all the features to the SmartPhone users. The animation libraries used by CSS or JS are powerfully used in the browser.

The same thing goes for putting input elements in forms in addition to security concerns and data transmissions. Many users prefer to use the Pinterest app over its site and same goes for all the popular web services such as Flipboard, Dropbox, Gmail and others.


Should a Site Provide a Responsive Layout?

This is the next question that is asked by many web designers. The main difference comes through user experience. You need to determine which method will attract more users and traffic. Also, mobile apps need time for programming and design. To have an app for your site, make sure it complements the responsive layout to offer real value to users.


Should you go for a Desktop-First or Mobile-First Approach?

Designing for the websites requires paying attention to guidelines such as widest width and smallest width. This is a question asked by a lot of freelancers and the big-time creative agencies.  Mobile-first is a popular opinion, popularized according to Luke Wroblewski book. The method works by starting from the basics, increasing the functionality for the environments which are able to handle it. Many designers also prefer a desktop-first approach gradually scaling down to the features for a mobile screen.

However, there is no industry standard and you can choose which ever is easy to start the web work. Do not forget to make changes when required for improving the design.


To Consider or Not Consider a Mobile App

Creating a fully responsive site running on any screen will satisfy many users. Do you need a mobile app if you already have a responsive site?  Well, the answer is all about the user experience. It is also about offering the best form of consumption for a specific project on a mobile device. If you think your users would want a mobile app, go for it but if you think a site is more than enough then do not invest on a mobile app.


In short, whether you want to build a site, you need to go responsive whether you have an app or not, as it’s preferred by users and search engines over the desktop based sites. Consult with web development Medialinkers services for more details about responsive website and a mobile app.