As technology advances, we learn to adapt and follow trends. The smartphone is a prime example. Almost everyone owns a smartphone and will usually have it on them or near them for a majority of the day. With the popularity of smartphones throughout the years, you can understand how mobile internet usage has now surpassed the use of a desktop. This trend will continue as mobile gains more market share.
Above is a chart from StatCounter which shows the comparison of mobile vs desktop market share worldwide in 2017.
So what is mobile first design?
Mobile first is exactly what it sounds like: creating a website design with mobile users in mind. Mobile first is all about how you can get your content across in a very simple and clean way. There’s no worrying or dealing with fancy buttons, hover menus and sliders. Mobile-first sites are designed for your phone first, then tablet, then desktop.
Google is a big reason everyone is developing mobile-first websites. Back in 2016 when mobile Internet usage first surpassed desktop, Google came up with the idea of mobile-first indexing. Google is changing the way their search engine ranks sites – now, they will be ranking sites based on their mobile usability rather than desktop if the user is searching from their phone. Google is all about making it easier for their users, so you can understand why this is a priority.
If you think mobile first isn’t right for you then you can always stick to responsive web design. Responsive web design allows sites to adjust to any type of screen size or device. It allows your content to be resized, enlarged, moved and shrunk to fit the user’s screen. So instead of designing in the order of phone, tablet, laptop, responsive design goes from desktop, tablet, phone.
Are your website visitors using mobile devices more than anything else? If so, you should consider mobile first design. If your visitors still heavily favour desktops, responsive design might be the way to go. As a website owner, your goal should always be to make it as easy as possible for your visitors to navigate your site. With mobile first and responsive design, your visitors will always be able to access the information they need quickly and easily, which will keep them coming back.