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Written by Anthony, 16 December 2020

The importance of mobile first web design

The importance of mobile first web design is growing. With more and more people surfing the Internet via smartphones, the standard requirements for websites have changed considerably in recent years. A website that is easy to read on a computer may not work well on a cell phone. By taking mobile web design into account, you ensure the best user experience, or experience, for each user. Google also likes mobile first designs: Google values more websites that are user-friendly on cell phones and ranks these sites higher.

The number of website visitors via cell phones continues to grow, making mobile web design essential for your website. That means customers are increasingly reaching for their cell phones for answers to their questions or to take care of something. And, as Think with Google discovered, 50% of visitors will stop visiting your site if it is not mobile-friendly. This also applies to regular customers.

What is mobile first web design?

Mobile first web design is about designing your website on a cell phone. Because this screen is a lot smaller than a computer or tablet, it requires a different design to make all the elements of the website stand out. Also, mobile users tend to linger less on your website, making user experience very important. All important information should be quickly findable, and navigation through the website should take little effort.

Responsive vs mobile first

A responsive website is not the same as a mobile first web design. By a responsive website, we mean a site that is scalable. This website is built so that it adapts to the device it is opened on. So a responsive website is one that scales and, because of the way it is built, looks the same on a phone, computer and tablet.

In a mobile first web design, the goal of the mobile user is more important than sticking to the original desktop design. For example, a responsive website on a cell phone often requires much more scrolling than on a computer, making it less user-friendly. For this reason, important buttons are often located in a different place in a mobile web design so that the user can navigate through the website faster. Also, the various content, such as images and pieces of text, are not always necessary to show completely in a mobile web design. Overview and quick navigation are key on a cell phone.

How do you check that the website meets the right requirements? For example, ask yourself if the font on your website is large enough and if the website is scalable. In addition, go for short paragraphs of text and plenty of white space to enhance your design. If you want to go with a mobile first design, then you have the advantage that these websites are often faster. This ensures an optimized user experience and better Google ranking.

Google indexing

Google now works on the basis of the mobile first index. If your website is mobile-ready, it will rank higher in Google rankings. This will give you an edge over the competition. Want to get started with Search Engine Optimization (SEO)? Then definitely consider optimizing mobile usability.

Mobile first header

An important part of mobile first web design is the header: the top portion of the website. On many responsive websites, the header image of the desktop version is scaled to a smaller size to fit a mobile screen. This results in images being displayed very small. In other cases, the image is partially cropped. This means that you have no control over the header displayed on smartphones. Therefore, a good website will offer the option of uploading a separate header for mobile users. This way you make sure that the header, the first part visitors see, always looks good.

Website building

Are you embarking on a completely new website? Then it is wise to use the bottom-top technique. This means you have to start with mobile first web design first. In fact, this design is a compact form of the website with the most essential components. From the mobile web design, it is then easier to build out to a more complex and comprehensive desktop version.

In summary, mobile first has many benefits: it increases user experience, it allows for faster load times and you rank well in Google. Mobile first web design is the future. Want to know more? We are happy to tell you more.