Before Apple launched its first iPhone, developers were mostly concerned with designing for the desktop computer, and to a much lesser extent for mobile devices.But in the last few years the web development industry hasn’t just seen a transformation, but almost a reversal of online surfing habits. Mobile devices can no longer be ignored. The number of people surfing the Internet with a mobile device continues to grow rapidly. It wouldn’t be smart, however, to brush aside the fact that many people still use their desktop computers to search online. So, why should you start a mobile-first strategy?
Why Choose Mobile First?
The choice of a mobile-first strategy depends of course on many factors. Mobile first isn’t always the best solution, but in most cases it may be a smart starting point. Working from a mobile perspective towards a desktop design is often the most logical way of working. Simply put, you work from small to large.
If the desired result is a website that looks great and works perfectly on desktops, tablets, and smartphones, starting from a desktop design isn’t going to work. The reason for this is simply that a desktop has a much larger screen that can contain a lot more information. There is a danger that pages are too full of information to be comfortably scaled down for mobile users.
Scaling down large web pages, also called graceful degradation in the industry, makes for a complicated website, which in turn is more difficult to troubleshoot and maintain. These disadvantages can be avoided by employing a mobile-first, or progressive enhancement, strategy. More than a strategy, it is in fact a paradigm, a new model for thinking about the structure, design, and content of websites.
You may be wondering how you can recognize a site that has been designed for mobile first. It will deliver exactly the information that you need on a mobile device, without any lag. Additional resources are loaded on an as-needed basis only, when the capabilities of the device used are able to handle them. Since 2010, when Google announced that they advocated the mobile-first approach, an increasing number of developers have taken the strategy on board. Some industry specialists even speculate that by 2015 the number of mobile device users will exceed the number of desktop users.
If you need to build your website from scratch or to redesign your existing one, contact us and we will guide you through this challenge.