What does it take to create a high-performing website?
Is it a matter of integrating the latest technology, being mobile-friendly or using more visuals?
It’s all of those things, but, ultimately, it’s about creating a universal experience for your website visitors, no matter what screen they’re using to view your website.
With a progressive enhancement strategy, the core functionality remains intact on a smaller screen. On larger screens, additional functionality becomes available. Both experiences are ultimately pleasing to the end user.
Let’s take a look at how you can use this approach to continually improve your business website.
One of the main reasons to stay current is customer behavior, which is a moving target. Things are changing much too fast for you to be standing still in the online world, and traditional redesign practices keep you locked in for longer without the ability to adapt to demands.
Can you safely say that your website is built with these criteria in mind?
With traditional website redesign practices, you would use the data available to you to determine what your users want in a website today.
But by the time you’ve fully developed and implemented the new design, browsing behaviors could have changed already.
This is why designers have started using a new approach to stay on top of the trends. Growth-driven design, mobile-first and progressive enhancement help designers keep things fresh and earn brownie points with users in the process.
As a result, websites can continually deliver an amazing experience to their user base.
Now you have a better idea of the why. Let’s take a look at the what.
There are basically two approaches to website design. They are:
In this case, we’ll say the cake has three layers—the bread, the filling and the frosting.
With progressive enhancement, the bread would be the core of the website, which is structured so that anyone can navigate and utilize it. If we were to use more technical terms, this would be the semantic HTML markup.
The filling is basically the design. How does the website look and behave? How does it adapt to screen size? This is driven by an external CSS stylesheet.
Apt analogy? We hope so.
Using progressive enhancement to build a website has many benefits.
Here are three specific advantages you’ll want to be aware of:
Continually improving your website enables you to adapt to user behavior. That, in turn, drives up engagement, which will also affect your bottom line.
Progressive enhancement is just one piece to the bigger puzzle of maintaining a robust online presence, but it is key to making it all work. Many designers are beginning to see it as the “right way” to developing a website, and it’s not hard to see why—it’s a user-first approach to design. Instead of pandering to the constraints of web technology, it allows for adaptive design that better serves the intent of the customer, and after all, they are that important.
Would you like to learn more about developing a website that stands the test of time? Download our High Performing Websites Guide to keep your website looking fresh.
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