We are living in an era of fast-paced technological advancements. With a never-ending variety in viewports, screen sizes, resolutions, and devices, users have been browsing the internet on anything and everything they can. This has given rise to the need for a flawless user experience regardless of the interface. Not only is responsive web design a hot trend, but it’s also a mandatory requirement for running a successful website.
By enabling responsive web design, we can ensure an optimal user experience along with unhindered rendering of a website on various devices. Earlier, responsiveness used to be an optional feature. But with more advancements, it has evolved into being one of the most crucial necessities. Responsive websites offer the same page elements and information. However, we quickly adapt to the screen size and other parameters of a mobile device.
Well, creating a responsive site might seem a little overwhelming at first. Fortunately, that’s where the best web tools for responsive web designers come into the picture! So, you don’t have to worry about where to start even if you don’t know hardcore coding. On that note, let’s take a detailed look into the 13 best web tools for responsive web designers.
1. LT Browser
LT Browser is one of the best responsive design tools out there for both designers and developers. It’s the next generation browser for building, testing, and debugging mobile websites to make them more user-friendly. You can easily check the mobile view of a website with the help of pre-installed viewports on both Android and iOS. Not only that, but users can also easily create their own custom device resolutions if the device of their choice is not available.
The side-by-side mobile view feature helps users avoid switching between two devices while testing. The inbuilt DevTools enable debugging different device sizes simultaneously. Some other important features include lighthouse reports, hot reloading, the facility to test on different network conditions, and one-click bug logging.
If you are looking for a free and open-source tool for responsive web design, Bootstrap is the way to go. It offers a toolkit that provides different elements crucial for building a responsive site. Even though it has some limitations as compared to LT Browser, users can easily select the elements of their choice, thus, making prototyping intuitive.
It is one of the most popular front-end frameworks for web development and design. It efficiently scales applications and websites and is easy for even those who are not designers or developers. Some of the extensive features include a variety of HTML elements, custom CSS and HTML components, and JQuery plugins.
Gridset enables designing, prototyping, and building customized responsive layouts. The best part about using Gridset is that it works well with a wide variety of content management systems such as WordPress Drupal, and Joomla. Not only that, but you can also integrate it with popular graphic applications such as Fireworks and Photoshop.
If you looking for a simple and minimalistic tool to ensure responsive websites, Ghostlab can be a real savior. All you need to do is drag the URL of the website you wish to test into Ghostlab and press play. You can begin testing in just one of all the devices in browsers connected. Others will just start mirroring all your actions. This includes scrolling, filling forms, clicking different buttons, hovering, and so on. You can also take screenshots and annotate them in the image editor they have already integrated.
One of the best tools out there for or a collaborative approach towards responsive web design is Invision. Sharing your work and progress with teammates is a breeze. You can easily access it from any device which helps you work on the go. It’s free of cost for a single active prototype at a particular time. If you wish to scale, it has a variety of different paid plans.
6. Am I Responsive
Am I Responsive allows designers to reorder and rearrange various devices first of all they need to do is click and drag according to their preference. There is a bookmarklet that helps users to perform a one-click responsiveness test of any website from your browser. You can also take some quick screenshots on breakpoints.
Mobitest is a free measurement tool for web performance on mobile devices. It facilitates the monitoring of the speed of your website on various mobile devices. Not only does it effectively measure the load time of a site, but it also provides details about the time web pages take to load through video recordings and waterfall charts.
All you need to do is enter the URL in this open-source testing tool and start running the application after selecting location and device options. The tool also helps in identifying the various factors that prevent the fast running of your website. This helps in coming up with innovative solutions for optimization.
Marvel is one of the leading web tools for responsive designers if you’re looking for something to create web projects and mobile application prototypes. Minimizing the need to code, this web-based application helps to turn mockups, images, and sketches into realistic and useful prototypes. It’s the best fit for designers who feel that email attachments and PowerPoint presentations lack the interactivity needed to pitch and share creative ideas.
9. Google Chrome DevTools
Google Chrome DevTools comprises built-in profiling, debugging, and authoring tools. While using the responsive mode, you can resize viewports as often as needed. This way, you be able to impart responsiveness to the design as it adapts to a wide array of devices, even the unknown ones. The screen emulator allows users to test the responsiveness of their website.
You can easily access devices and browsers used by your visitors with the help of Crossbrowsertesting. This tool allows you to perform exploratory testing as well as manual testing on more than 1500 mobile and desktop browsers. Users can also so easily compare the responsiveness of full-page layouts thanks to the feature that allows taking screenshots across different browsers. It also creates historical versions for hassle-free comparisons after every time you make a new change. This simplifies regression testing.
If you’re looking for a comprehensive solution for responsiveness, BrowserStack performs automated testing of a site on around 2000 browser and device types. To be more accurate, it’s one of the leading platforms for or web-based as well as live testing. It offers users the facility to test on a wide range of real iOS and Android mobile devices. Some other features of this tool include keyboard shortcuts, developer tools, media streaming, and much more.
Best known as a wireframing tool, Wirefy is meant to assist developers and designers in creating quick wireframes for presenting to clients. It highlights the content over other design aesthetics does, helping you make better UX decisions. The journey starting from sketches and ending at final deliverables can often be long and daunting. That’s where Wirefy comes in handy and speeds things up.
To quickly pull new user interfaces together, it needs a well-defined and precise collection of different atomic elements as well as a simple workflow. Boasting comprehensiveness and flexibility, Wirefy provides a foundation layer in which designers can add or remove components and style accordingly. To make the most out of this tool, it’s best if you have some CSS and HTML knowledge. It also offers a collection of scalable templates and HTML snippets.
13. Adobe Edge Reflow
Visual designing of a responsive website isn’t a cakewalk. Edge Reflow by Adobe seamlessly converts Photoshop files into CSS and HTML. It’s a tool meant for or designers to use a web page’s visual layout as a basis to create responsive web designs. Then, utilizing the reflow breakpoints, it visually adjusts the web design. Being a leading visual design tool, it does require basic knowledge of CSS and HTML. The bottom line, if you’re looking for increasing the intuitiveness of your workflow and quicken your design process, Adobe Edge Reflow is the way to go.
Every user deserves an intuitive experience no matter what device they are browsing from. Responsive web design changes the way a website responds to different layouts and screen sizes. Web designers keep this feature in high regard as it provides a consistent user experience on different devices.
Not only that, but responsiveness is also an important factor for the SEO friendliness of a website. The best way is to use a responsive web design tool that offers the most important features under a single umbrella. With the help of the right tool, it’s fairly easy to put together an entire website that fulfills your requirements as well as provides users with an intuitive interface at the same time.
If you are having trouble with which tool to try first, consider downloading LT Browser and allocating some time to trying its features. Due to the simple user interface and a not so steep learning curve, it’s one of the perfect tools for responsive web designers. Of course, you can also shortlist the tools that match your requirement from the above list and take free trials before finalizing the one.