The purpose of this class was to become aware of what we need to consider from a UX perspective when we’re planning a user experience that’s responsive – or even more, cross-channel.
Responsive design for the Web – means creating adaptable sites that serve different layout, navigation, and content hierarchy depending on the user’s device. This is done by querying the device first to get info about screen size, then serving the appropriate version.
Cross-channel UX – means creating integrated user experiences that span several channels (e.g. desktop, mobile, phone, in person).
Second, some strategic considerations:
- mobile first – content is the most important thing and you need to plan a hierarchy starting from mobile and expanding to the larger desktop version. This is done by prioritizing and labeling content.
- navigation – avoid very deep, complex hierarchies that can be hard to use on mobile
- information architecture – try to keep it consistent across channels and enable users to move seamlessly across channels
Here are some slides about what UX needs to consider when planning for responsive, prepared by a former TA:
- we learned about customer journey maps, or experience maps and practiced imagining one for a young family moving to Indianapolis, and how they would interact with various city agencies (water, parks) using a desktop portal, a mobile app, and in-person or physical interaction (e.g. unlocking gates to the park).
For more about cross-channel UX, I recommend the book Pervasive Information Architecture by Andrea Resmini. I have some excerpts from that book on the following slides:
These are huge topics and we barely scratched the surface, but that’s because, at the end of the day, it’s not mobile first, or cross-channel first… it’s users first! As long as you know the techniques of user-centered design and the philosophy, you can apply them to more complex situations such as responsive or cross-channel.