The front pages of the four editions of the EL PAÍS website and the front pages of the sections – including the EL PAÍS English Edition – have changed their design this week to a responsive model, one that adapts automatically according to whether the reader is using a personal computer, cellphone or tablet.
Several months ago, EL PAÍS adopted this system for its news stories, in line with changes that many media outlets are making across the world.
This new design has several advantages. On the one hand, it offers the reader a better experience – independent of the way in which they are viewing the website. On the other, it means web users can find information with greater ease. In fact, search giant Google recommends websites adopt this model. It also guarantees the consistency and coherence of EL PAÍS on any device, and adapts to the different rhythms of consumption of information during the day by the same user.
As well as these improvements, the adaptive version also means a change in the way that information is ordered and prioritized. The traditional structure, with three vertical columns, has been substituted by a front page made up of blocks. The upper blocks include the biggest stories of the day, while the rest group together other stories of interest in thematic areas, such as opinion, international or leisure.
Until now the EL PAÍS website could be viewed in its classic version (designed for PC) and on phones and tablets via a mobile version. But the multiplicity of devices, all with screens of different sizes, means that the adoption of a single, adaptive design was needed.
The choice of this model has a lot to do with the drastic change in the way in which the public consumes our stories. Four years ago, the percentage of readers who accessed the EL PAÍS web via mobile devices was barely 15%, while today that number has been multiplied by four. Now these readers account for more than 60%, and everything suggests that this number will continue to rise exponentially over the coming years.
EL PAÍS has been the leading digital newspaper in Spain and in the Spanish world for the last 18 months, according to comScore, the official analytics company in the market.
English version by Simon Hunter.