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Website Layout Tips: Where To Put Your Most Important Stuff [INFOGRAPHIC]

Since we posted last week about things to consider when preparing your website for the holiday season, it seems appropriate to share a great infographic about what gets seen, where, and for how long.

The impetus behind the research was originally to give internet advertisers some insight into where ads perform best to they can maximize their placements. Chartbeat analyzed the behavior of 25 million users web-wide and gathered their findings into the infographic below, which shows where the most visitors spend the most time on a webpage. (The graphic also features whales, so it’s pretty much a winner in my personal book.)

 A few key insights to look for:

The percentage of visitors to a website who show some form of engagement is 66%. Of those, the average amount of time spend actively engaging is 47 seconds.

The percentage of engaged visitors (shown by the red dots) Increases from 0 pixels to 500 pixels down the page, and then decreases steadily after that. So the best chance for engagement is right above the “fold” of the website. (Where you’d have to scroll down to see more.)

The number of seconds spent on a particular part of the page, however (shown by the yellow dots), steadily increases up to 1750 pixels from the top, and then drops off only slightly below that. This means that while you may have more engaged people interacting above the fold, those that do scroll down will spend more time engaging with the content.

What’s the moral for your website layout? Make a list of the elements and messages on your website and organize them into Must See, Would Be Nice, and Extras (or whatever categories you like). Put the Must See items just above the fold – or 500 pixel mark. Put the next most important things, those that you want people to spend more time with, a little further down. Finally, toward the bottom of the page you can include the extras that not everyone needs to see. Things like your copyright, contact details, employment, etc. will be found either way by the people who are engaged enough to look for them.

Without further ado, the Chartbeat infographic! Thanks to Adweek for posting.

Join The Conversation

  • skenow's picture
    Oct 13 Posted 3 years ago skenow

    The infographic and article are a good starting point, but there are a lot of unanswered questions about 'the fold' - which is a very arbitrary concept, even in the print world. Even just breaking this into only 2 dimensions (scroll position and time on site) and focusing on them can get rather complex in a hurry -

    • Were all the user sessions on the same type of device (mobile, tablet, desktop)?
    • Were all the screen orientations the same?
    • If mobile visitors were included in the data, did the sites change presentation or redirect to a mobile site?
    • What impact does the viewer's screen resolution play?
    • Did all the sessions start at the top of the page, or were did some arrive in the middle through a deep link in the page?
    • Were all the pages in the study the same length (at least 2500 px - the longest shown in the infographic)?

    The best conclusions one could draw from this, without chasing all the other data points, are

    • To get people to spend more time on your site, get them to scroll down.
    • Have longer pages

    And, how do you do that? Put what they are looking for at the anchor for the link - for most, that means the top of the page. You will need to know what that means for your visitors - screen resolution, screen orientation, and whether they are referrals or come from search result links.

    Remember - visitors don't come for the ads, no matter where they are on the page. They come for the content.

  • Matthew Stapleford's picture
    Oct 10 Posted 3 years ago Matthew Stapleford

    Interesting statistics and has got me thinking now about a current website I am working on. Perhaps I had best start moving some of my page content!

  • smatista's picture
    Oct 9 Posted 3 years ago smatista

    Agreed! I actually wrote an article about CrazyEgg awhile back, it's a really useful tool for small business owners. 

  • RogerHarris1's picture
    Oct 9 Posted 3 years ago RogerHarris1 Good article, Sarah! And good infographic. One way to take the guesswork out of where to place various content elements on your webpage is to use Crazyegg. This tool provides a "heatmap" of where people are clicking most on your page, above or below the fold or wherever. It can alert you to elements that are getting less attention than you want. You can also discover features on your page that confuse or misdirect users. It's about $10 a month I think, and you can change your subscription anytime. (BTW I have no affiliation, it's just a great tool that has worked for me.)

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