Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Training / Resources

Mobile Responsive Content Creation Tips

Here's a summary of guidelines to use when you revise your content for mobile. Just remember: these recommendations apply regardless of platform or channel. Mobile is just a useful constraint:

  • Plain language: use shorter, simpler words. Write short sentences and avoid convoluted sentence structure.
  • Objective language: neutral language is easier to read and more credible than marketing fluff.  Use words your user will know, not jargon.
  • Be concise: aim to get your main point across on a single screen, which is approximately 100 words. Ruthlessly delete unnecessary words. (That doesn't mean all anyone will read is a single screen—but it provides a helpful editing guideline.)
  • Write headings as links: assume that headings and sub-heads could be re purposed as navigation. Make them actionable and fill them with trigger words – words that users themselves would say if asked to describe what they are looking for.
  • Write the first sentence as a summary: assume that the first line of the page or section could be re purposed as a navigation summary. Put the main idea and important key-words in the first sentence.
  • Inverted pyramid: don't bury the leads. Start with the con-clusion. Put the most important idea first. Bottom line up front (BLUF).
  • One topic per paragraph: when readers scan the page, they look at initial sentences for main ideas. If additional ideas are presented in a single paragraph, users are likely to skip over them.
  • Highlight keywords: readers scan for hyperlinks in text, so this is a particularly effective way to highlight. You may also bold keywords, but avoid color variations or underlining words that are not hyperlinks.

Content Strategy for Mobile, A Book Apart,  Karen McGrane 2012

Mobile Device Emulators

Remember to check your content as it would be seen on a mobile device!

If you are using Firefox -

You can use the Tools > Web Developer > Responsive Design View

The following add on can also be installed -

Content Audits

Reading suggestions -

Doing a Content Inventory - June 18, 2002 | By Jeffrey Veen


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Writing for Mobile/Web

Writing exercises, witting tips, cheat sheets and other free resources to help develop your web writing skills are available on the Dey Alexander, 4 Syllables website.