Mobile First Web Design

What do we mean when we talk about “mobile-first design”? Well, it’s actually quite simple. We mean that when you sit down to design something for the web, you design it for mobile specifically, and think about other formats second.

Most design today is desktop-first. Unless you are developing a mobile application, most designers and product developers still think in terms of desktop users.

The problem with that is, mobile as a percent of all web users is rising fast, and will soon overtake desktop users for the majority of companies and websites in the world. Check your Google Analytics and you’ll find out just how many of your visitors are coming from mobile devices. It might already be more than 50%.

My recommendation is, no matter who you are, the next time you redesign or redevelop your website, you should approach the project mobile first.

How?

  • Have your designer do their initial mockups using the screen size of the most popular phone on the market
  • Use buttons, large fonts, and clean, simplistic designs that appeal to mobile users
  • Take extra care in your navigation to make it easy to find what users are looking for without too many steps
  • Make the big calls to action, like calling or purchasing out, persistent throughout the site, even when a user scrolls
  • Once you have settled on a mobile design you all like, then work backwards to determine what they will look like on a desktop or larger screen size