January 21, 2018

Hey Fletch … We are having some website trouble. It looks great on a desktop monitor but some of our pages are awful on a tablet or cell. Can you take a look at our site and give us some coaching?

DRF—We were overseas one summer and a friend went to the doctor with stomach pains. The doctor said, “you’ve got bugs.” Your site has “bugs.” The banners on your home page are 950 pixels wide and not scaling to smaller sizes. Your staff photos are in a table that has the first column acting like a header column—so one has to scroll in a weird way to see others in that row.

You are missing a Responsive Web Design (RWD)—“an approach to web design which makes web pages render well on a variety of devices and window or screen sizes.” Most sites are built on a theme, where a professional has laid down solid tracks to run on. Purchase a responsive theme and then customize it like crazy. Here’s how to tell if a site is responsive while on a desktop machine. Open a site on Chrome, Safari, Edge or Firefox and make the screen as narrow as it can go—it will look the width of a smartphone. If the page and graphics scale correctly, then you are have a responsive theme. 

I suggest that you ask a web designer in your congregation to volunteer to audit your site or hire a free lancer to do the same. If you want some names, let me know.