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Part of: Audiences, devices, channels

Mobiles and tablets

Last updated: 6 January, 2020

Following this helps people with:

  • mobiles: content needs to be concise and clear

  • tablets: content needs to be concise and clear

  • laptops: content needs to be concise and clear

  • desktop computers: content needs to be concise and clear


Accessing content on a mobile device exaggerates many readability issues due to the small screen size.

Improving content presentation and interaction for mobile use will generally improve its usability across all devices.

1. Design for mobile first not last.

2. Always ask “How would this look on mobile?”.

3. Put calls to action close to content they relate to.

4. Test content with people using mobiles.

Usability evidence

1. Designing for mobile first not last.

This can help you make your content concise and accessible.

2. Always ask yourself “How would this look on mobile?”.

If you are considering for example how long a paragraph is, think about how much longer it would be on a mobile. That might help you decide whether it should be split into 2 paragraphs.

3. Put calls to action close to content they relate to.

This saves users from scrolling across and down or searching around for the link and getting lost or frustrated. It also helps users who have a small area of visual focus.

4. Test content with people using mobiles.

Find out how they interpret and interact with the content. Did you write something that can be understood in different ways? Did anyone use their mobile in ways you did not expect?

Usability evidence

Reading on mobile, Amy Schade, Neilson Norman Group, 2017

Mobile first is not mobile only, Raluca Budiu and Kara Pernice, Neilson Norman Group, 2016

Do mobile technologies reshape speaking, writing, or reading?
Naomi S. Baron, SAGE Journals, 2013

Mobile App Design Fundamentals: 10 Tips for an Effective Content Strategy, Britt Armour, 2017

'Content strategy for mobile', Karen McGrane, 2012

How to Create Mobile Friendly Content, Neil Patel, undated

Relevant wiki content

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