Responsive design is becoming one of the major trends in the contemporary web development niche. Whatever business website you run (or just plan to launch), making it responsive is one of the priorities that will give it extra online exposure.
Among all the available ways of creating responsive websites, using website builders is one of the most beneficial solutions and here is why:
- Website builders are easy-to-use for everyone and there is no need to possess coding skills to give your website responsive features;
- They offer a set of responsive and mobile-optimized templates that perfectly adapt to all mobile screens and make your website accessible even on the go;
- Website builders ensure quality and smooth web building experience;
- They allow creating responsive websites on your own in a couple of hours or days.
Isn’t that enough to give preference to website builders, when you have an intention to launch a responsive website?
We Tested Out 7 Of The Best Responsive Website Builders:
- Webflow – The Best Responsive Website Builder
- WordPress – Best Platform to Create a Responsive Website
- Mobirise – Best Responsive Web Design Software
- Weebly – Responsive Ecommerce-ready Website Creator
- Squarespace – Web Builder to Make a Responsive Website
- uKit – Simple Responsive Website Builder for SMB
- Gator – Website Builder and Hosting by Hostgator
When it comes to selecting the best responsive website builders to launch a decent website, you may choose between offline software and online website builders.
- Offline software like WordPress or Mobirise, for example, is downloadable, which means that you should install it prior to starting working on your project development. It also comes with extensive integration options, which requires extra financial investments.
- Online website builders, such as Webflow, Weebly, Gator or uKit, don’t have these requirements, which gives them a certain privilege over offline website builders in some cases.
Let’s review the best web building services to create a responsive website in details:
Webflow – The Best Responsive Website Builder
Webflow – is the best responsive website builder, which is rightfully considered one of the most professional web building tools. Its high-end integrated drag-and-drop functionality along with a complex dashboard and abundance of advanced design customization tools make the service similar to contemporary Content Management Systems. That’s exactly why, Webflow requires detailed and thorough exploration before proceeding to the very process of website development. The website builder is a perfect choice for the creation of complex projects and it’s also a worthy pick for web design pros involved in custom website development.
- The system comes with a collection of responsive fully-customizable templates. Webflow offers a set of free and paid themes that are responsive by default. The system also grants an opportunity to start your own project from scratch and it will be responsive right from the start as well. Most ready-made templates are available in several variants of web page presentation applicable to almost all the pages. This gives each website unique and professional design.
- The website builder places strong focus on design customization. Webflow is all about advanced design customization. Along with extensive variability of responsive designs, the website builder offers a perfect opportunity to make use of its integrated toolset in order to edit all the web page elements. You will encounter hundreds of combinations, while experimenting with element sizes, positioning, effects, backgrounds, colours, opacity, rotation, layers and other features/tools available in the dashboard. Regardless of the amount and types of the replaced content and customized design elements, your website will remain responsive to be easily browsed on all mobile/desktop devices.
- Webflow ensures responsive web design environment, letting users create personalized dynamic content. All system users can design and update forums, blog feeds, online forms, photo/video presentations, portfolios and other types of responsive projects here. Lottie, After Effects and Lightbox Gallery integrations, in their turn, increase the chances of creating truly dynamic and mobile-responsive website content.
- The platform has a convenient drag-and-drop editor. It allows modifying the structure and layout of each responsive template chosen. The editor somewhat differs from those available in standard website builders – it includes classic visual editing options along with integrable widgets, general settings and modules that comprise the “CMS Collections” of the system. It’s also possible to pick between two website editing modes – either Designer or Editor based on the degree of your web design expertise.
WordPress – Best Platform to Create a Responsive Website
WordPress – is the best platform to create a responsive website and the most popular Content Management System in the world. The CMS comes with its own set of integrated templates, which are optimized for mobile devices by default. You can also choose among hundreds of designs available online. The platform is initially known as a blogging system, but it now makes it possible to start and manage almost all types of projects.
- Not all WordPress themes are responsive by default. When it comes to using built-in WordPress templates, you won’t have to worry about their responsive nature. All of them are responsive right from the start. However, if you decide to opt for third-party themes available on the web, not all of them will be mobile-ready. This depends upon the developer and the type of the theme you opt for. Check this out in advance.
- You can use integrable WordPress plugins to make your websites responsive. As a CMS, WordPress implies an opportunity of plugin installation. Fortunately, there are lots of plugins and extensions, integration of which can make your website responsive. Some of them include WPTouch Mobile Plugin, Any Mobile Theme Switcher, WordPress Mobile Pack, WP Mobile Edition, Mobile Smart and Jetpack’s Mobile Theme to mention a few.
- You can switch to the responsive WordPress theme any time. As far as many WordPress users start using their mobile devices to browse projects launched with the system, there are two options you may consider to make your project mobile-ready (if it’s not optimized for mobile viewing yet). Thus, you can either create a separate mobile version of your site or switch to one of the responsive WordPress themes.
Mobirise – Best Responsive Web Design Software
Mobirise – is the best responsive offline website builder that comes with a handy drag-and-drop editor. To use the platform, you should initially download and install it on your computer. This takes a few minutes only and is completed automatically. Mobirise is equally compatible with Windows and Mac, allowing for the development of quality mobile-responsive websites out of the pre-designed content blocks. One of the most distinctive Mobirise advantages is that the website builder is so easy-to-use that is especially works great for non-techies, who intend to start mobile-ready websites without any programming background and knowledge:
- The software has perfect website optimization for mobile devices. All the system designs are mobile-friendly by default. This is explained by the fact that the platform is based on Bootstrap 4 framework, which ensures instant mobile optimization of projects built with it. There is also an opportunity to preview the way your website will display on desktop and mobile devices before its final publication.
- The platform offers a set of ready-made content blocks instead of pre-designed templates. All the blocks are responsive, customizable and, thus, they are used to create any website structure and layout you need. To be precise, you can choose from over 50 themes (blocks) and 150 demo pages to create literally any type of project. These encompass headers, footers, lightbox galleries, sliders, videos/images, Google maps, data forms, pricing lists, customer testimonials, articles and many more. Additionally, it is possible to integrate Mobirise extensions into your project to make your website more interactive and suitable for the enhanced mobile browsing experience.
- One of the undeniable system highlights is its integrated AMP Website Builder. The Accelerated Mobile Pages open-source tool used to enhance the mobile performance of your mobile projects built with Mobirise. This is one of the best ways to give your website appealing look and ensure its effective performance on various mobile devices and distribution platforms. By using the AMP website builder, you ensure fast and smooth website performance and loading, effective SEO promotion, worthy content presentation without any coding skills involved.
Weebly – Responsive eCommerce-Ready Website Creator
Weebly – is a responsive eCommerce-ready website creator, which makes it possible to launch and manage quality websites without writing a line of code. The system was initially launched as a blogging platform, but it was recently acquired by Square that gave it a strong eCommerce focus. Weebly comes with a handy drag-and-drop editor and it also allows for code embedding, which is an advantage for users, who are aware of HTML basics. When it comes to the development of photography websites, the platform offers the following benefits:
- Weebly ensures built-in responsive website design. The website builder lets you create and manage responsive websites, which adjust to all mobile screens your visitors use, while browsing them. The content and navigation process automatically rearrange to fit desktop, mobile and tablet screens.
- You can balance the desktop and mobile needs of your project. With Weebly, you can launch websites that can be used on all the devices due to templates, which automatically adjust to the size and resolution of a screen.
- Go ahead to use Weebly’s Mobile Website Builder. The website builder offers the mobile version that allows quickly building mobile websites for iOS and Android devices. That’s a convenient option, when it comes to creating and managing website on the go and in the real-time mode.
- Drag-and-drop mobile web design solution. Weebly puts the power of creating mobile websites with the drag-and-drop visual editor used to customize fully-responsive designs. You can preview the final project version and make the edits before the project publication.
- The system has offered new fully-responsive themes. Even though, Weebly websites are mobile-optimized from the start, the service has introduced several fully-responsive templates that keep the project style and design consistent between the mobile and web versions.
Squarespace – Web Builder to Make a Responsive Website
Squarespace – is a popular web builder to make a responsive website featuring professional design and high end performance. The system applies modern approach to the process of website development, making your projects optimized for mobile viewing in the best way possible. Squarespace themes are created with the needs and convenience of users in mind, making it possible to easily navigate the projects on any devices – from smartphones and tablets to desktop computers.
- All Squarespace websites can adjust to large and small browsers. Your Squarespace responsive website content will automatically resize with regard to the size and dimensions of your browser window.
- The system offers various mobile styles to fit the device you are using. Most Squarespace designs come with additional built-in mobile styles, which are automatically activated, when the system detects that the website is viewed on a mobile device. The purpose and benefit of the mobile styles feature is that they affect design and navigation elements to keep your project mobile-friendly for all user categories.
- Squarespace offers the advanced Device View option. The website builder lets users see the way their project display on mobile screens and text their functionality via the use of the Device View feature. This is the best way to test your project’s responsive design on a desktop screen in the process of its editing. It gives you the idea of how your project will eventually display on a standard mobile browser as well.
uKit – Simple Responsive Website Builder for SMB
uKit – is the world-renowned and simple responsive website builder for small businesses. The service is easy-to-use and you can actually launch any website types with it based upon your business preferences and needs. uKit is functional, convenient and affordable and it’s also extremely simple. This is what has made the system one of the contemporary industry leaders.
- uKit allows creating websites, which are responsive right from the start. There is no need to fight with complicated codes or create several versions of your website to make it accessible both on mobile and desktop devices.
- The system offers a set of responsive designs. The website builder comes with an extensive collection of responsive templates and customization tools to give them required design and functionality.
- The use of the WYSIWYG editor lets you individually control the process of website development. Due to the WYSIWYG editor, the system allows tracking all the changes you make in the real time mode and preview the way the modifications are reflected on different devices, including desktop, mobile and tablet gadgets. This gives you the realistic impression of how your ready made website will be displayed on all the devices the potential clients can use, when browsing your website.
- uKit uses the Bootstrap grid. This cannot but contributes to the responsive nature of your website, helping you get the most out of this feature.
Gator – Website Builder and Hosting by Hostgator
Gator – is a responsive website builder powered by HostGator. The platform is mainly used to start simple websites, which makes it a good web building solution for beginners. Likewise, the system can be effectively used by web design pros, looking for the all-in-one intuitive and functional web building tool. The website builder comes with a drag-and-drop editor, mobile-ready designs and convenient tools for engaging web creation experience.
- Gator has a collection of mobile-responsive templates. They are divided into niche categories and offer an opportunity to start and then manage customizable projects without the need to use coding skills. Each template has a mobile preview mode, which lets you see the way your project will look on desktop and mobile screens before you actually publish it.
- The website builder has convenient website editing options. Gator’s integrated drag-and-drop editor allows making changes or rearrange on-page elements to form unique responsive website layout. Users may apply a set of built-in customization tools and website elements (contact forms, media files, Live Feeds, social integration buttons etc.) to give a project unique design.
- The platform grants access to the set of add-ons and applications. These are available in the integrated App Market of the system, giving your website enhanced functionality. Thus, you may choose from social media timelines, image galleries, search bars, navigation panels and other handy elements.
- With Gator, you can make use of versatile and extensive integration options. The system lets you select and add popular integrations, namely Google Maps, SoundCloud, PayPal, social networks and many more. This feature contributes to the ease of mobile browsing, bringing project performance to the new level.
- Creating a responsive web store is also possible with Gator. The system comes with a convenient eCommerce engine used to build small online stores. The platform allows creating and updating product galleries, setting up payment/shipping parameters, introducing bonuses/discounts, connecting SSL Certificates for maximum website safety etc.
- The website builder is empowered by the popular HostGator hosting provider. They will take care of your website hosting and domain name, offering the all-in-one plans to meet any needs.
Responsive or Mobile-Friendly?
The idea to make your website accessible on mobile devices is, undoubtedly, worth the attention, but as soon as you start exploring the available web building options, you will face two notions, namely mobile-optimized and responsive websites.
The notions are somewhat similar to each other as they both imply an opportunity to view your website on mobile devices, but there is still a notable difference between them.
What is a Responsive Website?
Responsive website – is such a kind of a website that can be viewable on all the devices, with no exception at all. Whether you wish to use a PC, a laptop, a smartphone or any other mobile device you have at hand, you won’t face any problems when visiting a responsive website.
These websites can easily adapt to any screen resolutions and sizes. The major features of responsive websites are as follows:
- As the name suggests, such websites effectively “respond” to the characteristics of devices they are viewed on;
- No need to create a separate desktop version of your website;
- SEO benefits;
- They help build customer trust and increase the amount of website visitors.
What is a Mobile-Friendly Website?
A mobile-optimized website – is a separate version of a desktop website, which can be viewed exclusively on mobile devices. Such websites are launched and coded with the only purpose in mind – to present the content to mobile users.
These projects cannot be accessible on PCs and laptops and, if you have the intention to make your mobile-optimized website accessible even to those users, who don’t have their mobile devices at hand, you’ll face the necessity to create a desktop version of it.
This implies extra investment of effort, money and time. Listed below are the major characteristics of mobile-optimized websites:
- No desktop version;
- Mobile accessibility only;
- Affordable cost;
- Orientation on a particular audience;
- Mobile-optimized experience can somewhat boost your website traffic.
Thus, there can be only one reason that can make you give preference to mobile-optimized websites. If you already own such a website and plan to use it for personal purposes without the need to engage large audiences, then there is no sense to invest into redesigning your website to make it responsive.
However, if you are just going to launch a website and have serious business intentions, then responsive design should be on the top of the list. This is where responsive website builders will be of great help to you.
Why Should I Build a Responsive Website?
Responsive design matters a lot, when it comes to contemporary web design trends. And that’s not because it is very convenient (although, this aspect is crucial as well).
That’s also because responsive websites are now ranked by the search engines. This eventually has serious impact upon your website promotion and traffic generation in the long run.
What Does Statistics Say?
Have you ever thought about the number of users, who access their favorite websites or look for the information they are interested in via their mobile devices?
Do you know the percentage of online purchases completed via smartphones or tablets these days? You might be pretty surprised to find out the recent stats!
According to the key trends and reports, the number of unique mobile users, who access their favorite websites from mobile devices, now constitutes around 5.11 billion people. That’s about 2 percent higher as compared to the previous year only. The number of active social media users has exceeded 32.48 billion users, which is 9 percent higher than a year ago.
What’s more, it is estimated that by the end of 2020, around 63.5 percent of people will be regularly using their mobile devices to access the global network. The number of mobile eCommerce, in its turn, will encompass 67.2 percent that equals about $2.32 trillion by 2021.
These figures just cannot be underestimated and if you really intend to go online, build customer base and promote your business, you won’t go without making your website responsive.
Google Opinion About Responsive Websites
At the beginning of 2015, Google announced mobile-friendliness one of the major website ranking factors used by its search engine algorithms. This has given the start to the era of website digitalization.
Much has changed since that time and you will hardly find sites that are not mobile-ready nowadays. But what about responsive websites? Are they more effective as compared to their mobile-optimized competitors/versions?
About two years ago, Google announced a new approach to the process of website indexation and ranking. This approach is now known as Mobile-First Indexing. This means that over a year ago, Google initially used the desktop version of a website, when evaluating its relevance in the search query results.
From now on, it will predominantly give preference to mobile website versions, while generating search engine results. So, if your website is not yet responsive, hurry up to take care of that not to lose your search engine positions.
What Can You Do About That?
To become responsive and to be indexed well by the search engines, your website should comply with a number of requirements. Here is what you should do about that:
- Make sure the mobile and desktop versions of your website have the same content, including texts, images with alt attributes and videos;
- Structured website data as well as meta data (titles and descriptions) for all pages should be filled out on both versions as well;
- Make sure your hosting will withstand extra traffic flow. This concerns only those users, whose websites have separate URLs for mobile versions.
Mind that the process of Mobile First Indexing is currently applied to the majority of websites. Steps listed above will help you avoid SEO-related problems.
Making your website responsive is a necessity rather than a whim. Websites accessible on different types of mobile devices and desktop computers generally drive more users, boost traffic, build customer trust and help generate more profit.
Among a variety of ways to make your website responsive, using website builders is the most suitable solution. These systems are not only easy-to-use and convenient. They also come with specific features that contribute to smooth and simple web building experience, which results in the creation of responsive websites.