When we launched Design Quips in August to help designers make decisions based on hard data — and to justify decisions they’ve already made — we estimated that a certain percentage would be interesting.
While many of the facts fall into the “nice to know” category, we were surprised how many factoids remind us how amazing, diverse and huge the web is. Here are ten quips that gave us particular insight into how imperative a mobile-first design approach is.
Do Small Devices Mean Big Numbers?
It’s easy to say “mobile is big.” But ComScore data in an Information Week article put that statement into perspective: By July of this year, mobile phones accounted for 17.4% of global web use, up from 11.1% last July.
Revenues of companies like Apple and Google get a lot of press. But wireless carriers take in $1.3 trillion each year — about four times the combined revenue of Google, Apple, Microsoft, and Intel.
A study examining mobile content and search traffic from Google found that 89% of the sites that get the most mobile search traffic offer mobile-specific content to search engine users (through mobile urls, responsive web design or other means).
How do People Live With Mobile Technology?
One-third of American adults (35%) own a smartphone of some kind as of May 2011.
When people browse the web with tablets, they visit 70% more web pages per visit than when they use a smartphone.
The terms “multimedia” and “multitasking” are merging: 85 percent of mobile owners use their tablet or smartphone while watching TV.
ComScore reports that in the second quarter of 2013, consumers spent an additional $4.7 billion via smartphones and tablets — 24% more than they did in the same period of 2012.
Does Design Matter?
After moving to responsive design, Time.com pages per visit across mobile, tablet and desktop are up considerably. Mobile, for example, is up 23% compared to what it had been.
After a responsive redesign, an e-commerce site, Skinny Ties, saw 71.9% conversion rate increase on iPhone.
Regent College had even better results: a 99% increase in unique visitors after their site’s responsive redesigning.
We’re not shy about our belief in the importance of responsive web design. These facts among others affirmed that just how important our mobile-first framework, online course, design tools and design work are.
Just by researching statistics, we confirmed one assumption: Mobile design isn’t just becoming more important, it’s also becoming more diverse. New mobile products come out quarterly, from new phones to Google Glass to (hypothetical) smart watches. Staying on top of change is a constant challenge designers face.
Staying On Top of Change
Having design data handy can help validate some of your decisions as you face those challenges.
Our collection of design data grew from zero to 600 in a few months. In that time, organizing the database became more than a matter of tags and keyword searches. We’ve also started organizing quips into categories — questions, to be specific, that help guide research. For example, “Should I design mobile first?” presents many quips like those listed above with a single click. Every day we find more amazing facts that give designers insight into the web world, helping them decide how to design the best products possible, and helping them defend their decisions.