Forrester (and others) have put out some useful tips for designing experiences for mobile including Mobile App Design Best Practices and Best Practices in Mobile Banking. What I like best is seeing the fundamentals of experience design being applied to mobile. Here some basics:
Take a Systematic Approach to Understanding Your Customers
Success in designing great mobile experiences follows the same process as designing any great experience – with a systematic approach of understanding your target audience. Organizations by now should know better than to rely solely on “instinct” or surveys to discover latent wants. Watch customer behavior across channels and look for problems that you can fix. Stop guessing! Even when smart people guess – it is still a guess. Get out there and observe your customers interaction with your solution and know what they like, love, hate, ignore, want, and really need to have a great experience.
Focus Your Design On Helping Customers Complete Their Goals
Customers’ expectations for mobile are high and rising. To deliver great experiences, you need to work closely with customer experience experts and application to design mobile interactions that are easy to use, meet customers’ desires, are enjoyable, and take into account the mobile context. Context of use is everything – especially with mobile. The mobile experience takes place in a small space and the design patterns and metaphors are unique to this experience. Get to know these patterns and understand when to apply them in the right context.
Encourage Customer Adoption by Promoting the Benefits
To drive mobile adoption and use, like any experience, you must guide customers from their first encounter with your mobile experience to habitual use. Promote mobile solutions that help customers overcome the barriers to adoption. You got to make it easy to engage on the first encounter and be concise and clear on what your solution does for them – not what it does – but what it does for them. (Jeof calls these the “Do Fors” in The Customer Experience Revolution)
More and more of our experiences are mobile. We are busy and on-the-go – interacting with our handheld, tablet or mini devices. Knowing and applying these best practices will help us all have better experiences.