Have you ever heard of the term “above the fold” when it comes to newspapers? Well it also refers to the area on websites. “Above the fold” refers to the area of a computer screen a person can see without scrolling up, down, left, or right.
Just the other day, a customer asked me where the best spot to put a PayPal button was on their site. My answer was “above the fold.” I began thinking about my answer and felt like this is a very common question. Since “above the fold” is so important here’s a little background about this area of your website.
During the internet’s early years, many believed users would never scroll down a page. Since then, there has been debate over the best use for above the fold space. Usability expert Jakob Nielsen recently tested the notion of “above the fold” through his Eye-tracking Study. Through this, he found users do scroll through web pages, but spend 80% of their time looking at information above the fold. To further that, those users that scroll do so primarily when they feel information is important or valuable to them.
This study can guide what kind of content to include above the fold. Since users only spend 20% of their time on the bottom of web pages, the top area space is more important than ever. Keep this idea in mind when you are selecting content to include and showcase on your own site. The type of content will differ from business to business, but it’s important to be selective in choosing what information to put here.
Try to incorporate important elements that will capture your audience.
Include things like specific calls to action, directions on use, or relevant imagery. All of these can be considered quality pieces that will interest your customer to scroll through your webpage. ProBlogger does this extremely well.
While customers spend 80% of their time above the fold, don’t try to overwhelm them with content in this space. Targeting those important elements of your business will interest customers to scroll and read your website. It’ll be tough for a customer to focus with lots of content squeezed into a small area. With a simple design in mind, you want to make it as easy as possible for your customers to find the information they need. Providing customers with a clearly defined path on you site is important.
Surety Bonds uses a simple design to direct customers to a strong call to action.
Content above the fold is the first encounter between you and your customer. Selecting the right content to show can make all the difference and allow customers to engage with your website. Quality pieces of information will interest visitors and keep them coming back.
Do you notice that you get more activity on information placed “above the fold?”