Mobile First

Posted on by jordanhaines

wroblewskii-mobile-firstThis week as part of the Langarth(work) book club I finished reading Mobile First by Luke Wroblewski, I chose this book as our first book to read as I am currently in the process of redesigning my personal site and wanted to build upon the responsiveness of the site. I wanted to get a better understanding of mobile first design as I am pushing Langarth in this direction and also our clients.

This book is short and straight to the point which is the kind of book I like as I have such a short attention span. The book also contains lots of facts that we could use to help explain to your clients why designing for mobile first is the best way to go.

The first thing to learn about mobile first is that there are three types of user:

  1. Look/Find (Urgent Info)
  2. Explore / Play (Board)
  3. Edit / Create (Urgent Change / Micro-tasking)

With an understand of what type of user is looking at your site on a mobile device you can design your UI to meed the needs. This is a good time to link to the UI Guide lines for IOS and Android:

The basics of the UI for a mobile device is that the navigation and any buttons have to be big enough for finger tips (44px x 44px) and also have enough spacing between the elements so buttons are not pressed by mistake.

This is important but the main importance that comes from designing your website with mobile first in mind is content. Content is king as the old saying goes and with mobile that is true, From the book I have been convinced that you have to really be strict about what content is shown. If its not needed, don’t show it. Remember people on mobile devices want to get to your content quickly and in as few clicks as possible. By designing for mobile first it forces you to focus on what content is important, this will also help in the desktop versions of the site as well.

Another point from the book that really caught my attention is that we could get really creative with our mobile websites if we learn mobile gestures, a guide can be downloaded from here: with this knowledge you can design interesting and engaging experiences.

For my new design on my personal website I have found this book helpful and once I have sorted my colour pallet out and the information I want to put on my site I will start with my mobile design first and see where it take me.

I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for facts and insight in to designing for mobile first.

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