First and foremost, what is a mobile-first design?
It is arguably one of the best strategies to create a responsive or adaptive design.
The mobile-first ideology is the idea that designing for mobile is the hardest platform to design for and therefore should be approached first in order to make designing for other devices easier.
Thanks to the constant advances in mobile technology, and the growing popularity of viewing websites through smaller screens, this design approach has become very useful to web designers and developers.
This approach has allowed designers and content coordinators the right approach in creating more user friendly and creative websites.
Pros of Mobile-First Design
Avoids overcrowding website.
When designing a website, not only is the aesthetic taken in account but also the content that should be on the site.
When you start from a desktop view you have a lot of real estate of white space to work with that most typically like to fill.
This sometimes leads to overcrowding the website with too many pages, or features that deteriorate the user experience of that site from a mobile perspective.
Content on website is more focused.
Tackling the site from a mobile-first approach allows the creator to be able to better determine what content is absolutely vital and necessary for the website to achieve its goals and be successful.
This leads to having a cleaner and more organized website.
Not only that but it ensures that the website content is focused on the needs of all users, both on desktop and mobile.
Consistent user experience throughout website.
Designing from a mobile-first design approach allows you to see all the technical issues you may have when scaling through platforms.
This allows designers and developers the chance to work through those issues before hand in order to provide a seamless user experience throughout the transitions of displays that the site may be viewed on.
This process allows the opportunity to come up with creative solutions that not only enhance but also drive the user experience of the website.
This could possibly include designing the site to use features already built-in to the mobile device, like the camera feature or mic in the phone.
Can be applied to already responsive layouts.
Although mobile-first and responsive design are two different design approaches, mobile-first thinking can be easily incorporated to responsive layouts.
Responsive web layouts respond to the size of a browser, so no matter what size the browser is it will reflow the layout of information accordingly to fit the display size.
As effective responsive design is on its own, it doesn’t offer much control on how the website will show the information on the page or what information is being shown on the screen.
If you apply a mobile-first design perspective from the beginning, you can better predict how the website will display itself as it transitions to different display sizes and plan your site accordingly.
Mobile-first design is ideal for creating websites that are content and user experience focused.
In this new era of technology, it is best to be thinking of the future of web and how it will be viewed.
Taking into account the screen size that the majority of your users will be viewing your website when designing will ultimately help your business drive traffic, plan content, and utilize your website to its maximum potential.