It is often the case that people don’t spend much time actually reading web pages. Usually we just scan through looking for something that catches our eye. This may be a word, phrase or image.
Obviously when a web page contains an article, news item or product information then we may be more inclined to read at least some of it because we have chosen to visit that page from a link that has already caught our eye and is relevant to our interest.
Scanning the page of a website
Most of us lead busy lives and often the internet is used as a ‘quick fix’ to get information or answers fast. The web is meant to save time, right? So, we move quickly through website pages looking for an answer. If we don’t find it on a page quickly we move on until it jumps out and hits us between the eyes. We only read what it necessary to make a quick decision whether to continue reading or clicking or hit the back button and pick another search result from Google.
We rarely read everything on a web page
Only a small amount of what we see on a web page is of interest to us. We look for just the bit of information or prompt that we think we are expecting and the rest is ignored. By scanning a web page in this way we find just what is relevant for that visit. Scanning is nothing new, we have been doing it for years with magazines, newspapers and even TV channels. What we notice on a web page will depend on what is on our mind at the time and that will be a small amount of the page rather than most of it.
How We Can Help
As experienced web designers we use this knowledge to help us design effective web pages and websites. Understanding how users scan a web page means we can help market your products and services effectively. By leaving out what is not necessary, we optimise the necessary – this is part of our ‘clear function’ approach to web design. Detailed information is usually placed deeper within a website and is easily found or navigated to by users interested in reading such content.