I'm no UX expert but I've been tasked with reviewing our current design structure vs a proposed one for our mobile site.

I've mocked something up in Balsamiq that utilises a horizontal tabbed structure, but includes drop down panels within the tabs.

It looked ok in my head, but seems a bit unconventional, as least from personal experience with other apps/mobile sites.

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The reason why I opted for drop down sections within the tabs is so that API calls can be activated only on request and the data would not need to be front-loaded.

Any tips on conventions here guys?

  • I think you're trying to do too much on one screen. You don't need to do everything from one place. Lead the user down a journey; give them one decision to make at a time instead of all of them. – JonW Apr 7 '14 at 10:24
  • Have you tried also looking at the context of mobile? Without knowing the content of the site, I'm assuming that could be paired down via card sorting or just reorganizing for mobile. Otherwise, looks like you have 3 different navs and that takes up a lot of space that could be used for the user to focus on content. – Pdxd Apr 8 '14 at 11:44

You might be asking too much of your users. Or maybe not.

First you have to decide if tabs are the right approach.

A. Are users going to be switching between them to reference info?
B. Or will they more likely choose a path and move on?

If A, you're on the right path. If B, you should navigate them to the right area and leave the other "tabs" behind.

For the expanding sections, it's going to depend on context again. Starting with performance on your mind is smart.

A. Will your user want to have all the information together and progressively disclose the detail?
B. Or could the workflow be broken out into task-based pages?

Ultimately, there's no reason it can't work in principle. You just have to get it right ;)

  • Thanks for the response! TBH I don't think the tabs are related in a "reference info" sense. I think we're trying to cram it in to tabs when really they are separate navigable pages/sections... – Paul Apr 8 '14 at 12:24
  • You've got your answer then. – plainclothes Apr 8 '14 at 16:19

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