It wouldn't be wrong to say that a responsive web design is a necessity today. Statistics show that 57% of internet users refuse to recommend a business with a poorly designed website on mobile, and 85% of adults think that a company's mobile website should be at par or better than its desktop website.
With so many people using mobile to browse the internet, these numbers are unsurprising.
Thus, companies must emphasize creating responsive websites that are equally prompt and appear on all devices. This brings us to the next part of the challenge: building responsive websites. Indeed, it is a tremendous task, but we have a solution that will help you solve your purpose effectively.
Besides, maintaining any website and selecting a suitable design framework is of absolute priority. Since a new screen resolution device is launched practically every day, your website may not appear pixel-perfect if it is not responsive.
This is where responsive web design frameworks sweep in to significantly lower the development time without compromising the quality.
This blog will discuss frameworks for responsive web design and how they help in the web designing process. So, read it till the end to find all your answers.
What is a Framework for Responsive Web Design?
The ever-growing need for changes in the attributes of a website, like usability, availability, and appearance over a gazillion different screen resolutions, has paved the way for design frameworks that can solve the user's ever-growing needs.
Besides smartphones possibly being the future of retail and technology, more focus is being driven on responsive frameworks.
Well, the responsive frameworks are ready to design, have less complicated protocols, and offer multiple end-to-end features, which are necessary for today's website development cycle.
Simply put, a framework in the world of web designing is a complete package consisting of a structure of files and folders of standardized codes in various languages, like HTML, JS, CSS, etc., which can be utilized to facilitate the development or designing of websites.
It can be used as a website's structure or base, to which additional elements and specifications can be added. In other words, it is the model structure of any website.
Even though websites are diverse, their basic structure is quite similar. So, frameworks provide the same in a package form so that developers can leverage the code and avoid redoing the entire design from scratch. As a result, developers can save a lot of time and effort that goes into creating the basics of a website.
How many types of Frameworks are there?
There are two types of responsive web design frameworks available: back-end and front-end.
The difference between back-end and front-end frameworks is whether the framework is made for the presentation and application layers.
Back-end frameworks can be defined as a set of files with libraries that can be used to access databases, session management, and template structure.
Front-end frameworks are also called CSS frameworks and are made up of a structure of files. We will discuss front-end frameworks in detail.
Usual components of front-end frameworks
Selection of frameworks
Even within the responsive web design CSS frameworks, we can distinguish between two framework types. This distinction is based on their complexity. They are simple frameworks and complete frameworks.
However, it must be noted that this difference is subject, and none is less than the other in any way. They just offer different solutions based on the level of flexibility or complexity required for a particular project.
Simple frameworks are also called “Grid systems,” although they are frameworks in every way and offer style sheets along with column systems. This makes it easy to place and distribute different elements according to the established designs.
How to choose the right Framework for Responsive Web Design?
Choosing the right framework for responsive web design for your website is far from simple. Why? Consider the following factors:
So, how can you decide on the right framework for your website?
Here are some tips that will help you in the process:
1. The time required for installation
While some are easy to install, this saves your time and lets you start using them real quick. On the other hand, some require more time to configure. So, make sure you consider this factor.
2. Comprehensive or not
Some are a bit more complicated and harder to understand than others. If you have prior experience with frameworks, you may choose the complex one, but beginners should choose simple ones.
3. Characteristics and options
Complex frameworks usually come with more options than straightforward ones. They also offer more configuration options, interface options, and widgets that you can leverage.
4. Integration opportunities
Integration capabilities are something you should look for in all technical resources and tools. When you choose your framework, make sure it can integrate with other systems.
5. Long term support
Some of these projects often lack continuity in time and updates; support services may also get interrupted. Always choose a project that guarantees continuous support.
What happens if your designer abandons the project midway? You need to hire someone who has enough experience to tackle the project and save you. By choosing a popular framework, you ensure you can always hire other developers for the same project without risking anything.
What are the advantages of frameworks?
The following are the benefits of using a framework for designing responsive websites:
Here are a few frameworks you can use to design your responsive website:
Bootstrap is a sleek, powerful, and intuitive front-end framework that helps designers and developers work faster and more efficiently. It is also the most popular among CSS frameworks.
2. Responsive Grid System, by Graham Miller
It is a super easy responsive design built under the inspiration of Ethan Marcotte's responsive web design.
Gridiculo.ou is another framework with responsive grids that is feature-rich and also easy to use.
“MUELLER represents a modular grid system designed for both responsive/adaptive and non-responsive layouts, leveraging Compass. This system grants you complete control over factors such as column width, gutter width, baseline grid, and media-query implementation.”
We are not saying that all the businesses and enterprises out there are using frameworks to design responsive websites or that they should. Some prefer hiring designers and building the website from scratch. It ultimately boils down to your needs and the resources you have.
However, we are confident that frameworks, being one of the responsive web design techniques, are beneficial for those trying to speed up their mock-up process and are reluctant to start from scratch. If you have minimal resources at hand and are undergoing a time crunch, you should consider this option.