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Google Prefers Responsive Design

Updated: December 4, 2020

By now, you are probably used to hearing about Google changing its search algorithm to accommodate various trends in the web design market. They are constantly updating the algorithm to keep up with the times. Google’s planned algorithm updated slated for April 21, 2015 is no different. Mobile-friendly websites aren’t anything new. For many years, web designers were building websites for clients which had two different versions, one best suited for larger screens such as desktops and laptops; another version was intended for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. This method of website design is still around, but often causes more work for the designers and developers, due to the need to manage two versions of the same website.

Enter Responsive Web Design (RWD). Responsive designs allow a designer to set break points in a single template (also known as a theme in the WordPress world) that tell a user’s browser how to display the site. This causes the template to dynamically adjust the layout and styles according to a device’s size, thus ending the need for a separate template or system to detect mobile devices. Essentially, Responsive designs accommodate all devices of all sizes.

Responsive design has been around for a few years now and has grown to a point where it’s very common and accepted. This is where Google’s justification to update their algorithm lies. With the usage of mobile devices growing to a point where they exceeded desktop computer usage in early 2014, it makes sense that Google would want to give Responsive websites an edge.

Google prefers responsive design and has sent us clues for months now. As of April 21, 2015, it will become official that Google will give “extra points” to websites built with responsive designs. Are you ready?

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Originally published on April 2, 2015

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About the Author

Wendell T. Harness

I’ve been building online properties since the late 1980’s and transitioned to web design in 1999. I formed Harness Media in 2005 to help businesses grow through online marketing. I also talk to cats in a silly voice.

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