Designing for Mobile, part 1

So me being the overly ambitious person that I am, I decided to start a new series ‘Designing for Mobile’. Even though it says part 1, who knows if there will be any more installments. BUT Ill give it a shot.

So recently i was asked for an overview of how to design for mobile. Here is my response, i figured id share it with all of you. The original question was something like ‘how do you approach conversion of a web site to mobile?’ – my response below.

“For the most part we recreate the mobile site based on design and content from the web site. Designing and information architecture for mobile is completely different than web – the screen is smaller, and the needs are different. For example, on mobile contact info and address are always front and center. We can assume oftentimes a user will be accessing the mobile site while on the go, likely trying to find the business contact info or location. Or, a user is trying to find product information while in a store. The mobile experience needs to be designed according to the anticipated needs of the user. Secondarily we can provide tons of additional content that is a click or two deeper.

Also in mobile users tend to think side to side instead of up and down AND side to side as they do in web. In mobile left is back, right is forward – that’s a function of current mobile design and information flow, and is a key interface concept when designing and doing IA for mobile. Too many folks are trying desperately to retrofit their website for mobile and failing miserably because they don’t understand the interface assumptions and mindset of a mobile user.”

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