intra-page links and the (mythical) fold

21 Jul 2006 - 8:11am
8 years ago
3 replies
808 reads
Bryan J Busch
2006

I'll open with a firm conviction of mine: there is no fold. Web pages
don't fold. Newspapers fold. Common browser window sizes make for
interesting statistics, but I'd never recommend designing for just
one. There, that's out of the way.

My real question is this: when people in the web design business talk
about items being "below the fold," and the web page in question uses
a #link to skip to the bottom of the page, where the majority of the
site's navigation lives (example: http://powazek.com/), does that
content count as being below the fold? Technically, the visitor
didn't scroll to get to it, and neither did the page reload. In all
of the usability research I've read, this technique is never
mentioned, but things like <a href="#content">Back to top</a> are as
old as the web itself.

Does anybody know if researchers like Jakob Nielsen just never
encounter this sort of thing when they have hundreds of test subjects
using thousands of web pages, or is this behavior simply ignored when
tallying data?

Bryan J Busch
play: http://theynow.com
work: http://geniant.com

Comments

21 Jul 2006 - 8:44am
Todd Roberts
2005

Here is an article from Nielsen about in-page links:
http://www.useit.com/alertbox/within_page_links.html

"Does anybody know if researchers like Jakob Nielsen just never
encounter this sort of thing when they have hundreds of test subjects
using thousands of web pages, or is this behavior simply ignored when
tallying data?"

21 Jul 2006 - 1:22pm
Ryan Nichols
2005

Whenever we think about something being above or below the fold, it's
about what people see in their very first experience to the page.
It's all about that first impression and the messaging that needs to
be seen at once, at the same time, without any work or action what-so-
ever. So in most cases for us, a link like that is just another way
to 'hide' content that deserves to be on the page, but not in the
first impression.

Ryan Nichols
Apples To Oranges
www.apples-to-oranges.com

On Jul 21, 2006, at Fri, Jul 21, 6:11AM, Bryan J Busch wrote:

> [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
> material.]
>
> I'll open with a firm conviction of mine: there is no fold. Web pages
> don't fold. Newspapers fold. Common browser window sizes make for
> interesting statistics, but I'd never recommend designing for just
> one. There, that's out of the way.
>
> My real question is this: when people in the web design business talk
> about items being "below the fold," and the web page in question uses
> a #link to skip to the bottom of the page, where the majority of the
> site's navigation lives (example: http://powazek.com/), does that
> content count as being below the fold? Technically, the visitor
> didn't scroll to get to it, and neither did the page reload. In all
> of the usability research I've read, this technique is never
> mentioned, but things like <a href="#content">Back to top</a> are as
> old as the web itself.
>
> Does anybody know if researchers like Jakob Nielsen just never
> encounter this sort of thing when they have hundreds of test subjects
> using thousands of web pages, or is this behavior simply ignored when
> tallying data?
>
> Bryan J Busch
> play: http://theynow.com
> work: http://geniant.com
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
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21 Jul 2006 - 3:00pm
Robert Hoekman, Jr.
2005

*Some* research indicates that people don't like to scroll, which would make
the "fold" an important thing to pay attention to, regardless of how you
feel about it, but other research indicates (IMHO, more correctly) that
users are quite willing to scroll as long as there's a good reason. They
believe what's below the fold will be more of the same of what's above it,
so if your content above the fold leads them to believe they'll find what
they need below it, they'll scroll.

In either case, it just makes good sense to keep content you want to have
seen all at once, in a single glance, above the fold.

-r-

On 7/21/06, Ryan Nichols <ryan at apples-to-oranges.com> wrote:
>
> [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
> material.]
>
> Whenever we think about something being above or below the fold, it's
> about what people see in their very first experience to the page.
> It's all about that first impression and the messaging that needs to
> be seen at once, at the same time, without any work or action what-so-
> ever. So in most cases for us, a link like that is just another way
> to 'hide' content that deserves to be on the page, but not in the
> first impression.
>
> Ryan Nichols
> Apples To Oranges
> www.apples-to-oranges.com
>
>
>
> On Jul 21, 2006, at Fri, Jul 21, 6:11AM, Bryan J Busch wrote:
>
> > [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted
> > material.]
> >
> > I'll open with a firm conviction of mine: there is no fold. Web pages
> > don't fold. Newspapers fold. Common browser window sizes make for
> > interesting statistics, but I'd never recommend designing for just
> > one. There, that's out of the way.
> >
> > My real question is this: when people in the web design business talk
> > about items being "below the fold," and the web page in question uses
> > a #link to skip to the bottom of the page, where the majority of the
> > site's navigation lives (example: http://powazek.com/), does that
> > content count as being below the fold? Technically, the visitor
> > didn't scroll to get to it, and neither did the page reload. In all
> > of the usability research I've read, this technique is never
> > mentioned, but things like <a href="#content">Back to top</a> are as
> > old as the web itself.
> >
> > Does anybody know if researchers like Jakob Nielsen just never
> > encounter this sort of thing when they have hundreds of test subjects
> > using thousands of web pages, or is this behavior simply ignored when
> > tallying data?
> >
> > Bryan J Busch
> > play: http://theynow.com
> > work: http://geniant.com
> >
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> > To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> > List Guidelines ............ http://listguide.ixda.org/
> > List Help .................. http://listhelp.ixda.org/
> > (Un)Subscription Options ... http://subscription-options.ixda.org/
> > Announcements List ......... http://subscribe-announce.ixda.org/
> > Questions .................. lists at ixda.org
> > Home ....................... http://ixda.org/
> > Resource Library ........... http://resources.ixda.org
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://listguide.ixda.org/
> List Help .................. http://listhelp.ixda.org/
> (Un)Subscription Options ... http://subscription-options.ixda.org/
> Announcements List ......... http://subscribe-announce.ixda.org/
> Questions .................. lists at ixda.org
> Home ....................... http://ixda.org/
> Resource Library ........... http://resources.ixda.org
>

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