AOL to Redesign All Content Sites with Responsive Design

Change Helps Ad Sales, Serving and Click-through, Web Giant Says

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A correction has been made in this story. See below for details.

AOL is planning to redesign all of its content sites with responsive design -- an approach intended to optimize a site's layout across devices with different screen sizes -- during the coming months, according to Jay Kirsch, president of technology and entertainment at AOL.

The change in design is meant to streamline the ad sales and display process, Mr. Kirsch said, speaking to a reporter during a dinner at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Responsive web design will let AOL serve ad space on its mobile and desktop websites from the same portal rather than sell mobile and desktop display separately.

The company has already redesigned the Engadget and sites, allowing them to serve a dynamic display ad at the bottom of the screen that persists for a short while as visitors scroll down and then disappears, Mr. Kirsch said. Click-through rates on such ads have been three times higher than typical, static mobile display, he said.

Mobile apps have drawn the spotlight more often as tablets and smartphones have spread, but building responsive sites for web browsers has become a growth area for digital agencies as brands and publishers look to simplify web publishing and homogenize consumers' experiences across devices.

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CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that AOL Autos had already been redesigned with dynamic advertising.

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