The mythical page fold and why it doesn’t really matter anymore

After years of emphasis on placing the important page elements ‘above the fold’, we’re now being shown that users actually don’t mind scrolling! That is, if you have interesting content and adequate visual cues that there actually is something worth looking at down there.

Successful sites like Amazon.com have LOTS of content below the fold.

Design tips to encourage scrolling

We can offer three design tips to ensure content below the fold is seen.

  1. Less is more – don’t be tempted to cram everything above the fold. Good use of whitespace and imagery encourages exploration.
  2. Stark, horizontal lines discourage scrolling – this doesn’t mean stop using horizontal full width elements. Have a small amount of content just visible, poking up above the fold to encourage scrolling.
  3. Avoid the use of in-page scroll bars – the browser scrollbar is an indicator of the amount of content on the page. iFrames and other elements with scroll bars in the page can break this convention and may lead to content not being seen.

From The myth of the page fold: evidence from user testing

Read more: (Re)blasting the Myth of the Fold and Blasting the Myth of the Fold

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Chris Malpass

I'm a web developer, photographer, casual gamer, and technophile from Virginia, USA.