Myth #4 Information “Above The Fold” – Is Too Much Scrolling Bad for Conversions?

In today’s digital age, and especially when it comes to the information discovered via smartphones and tablets, it’s hard to fit everything you want to say on a single screen. Scrolling becomes necessary in many cases to ensure that all of the content a visitor needs to see is delivered promptly and without increasing the number of clicks it takes to find that information. However, there is some evidence to suggest that too much scrolling may be hindering your conversions.

An Interesting Study

A study published by lukew.com points out that people who use smartphones, tablets, and other touchscreen devices start scrolling before a webpage even finishes loading. Why? According to surveys, this occurs for many different reasons. Consumers have come to expect that they’ll need to find the bottom of the page in order to continue to the information they want. Some consumers have found that the size of their device screens make it so that information is cut off, and they’re forced to scroll to find it. This study found that the most viewed area of a webpage from a touchscreen device is the area just above the fold, though some scroll right by it before the page finishes loading.

Above-the-Fold vs. No Fold

Thanks to touchscreen technology, many mobile website designers have begun to shy away from above-the-fold website design. Instead, they opt for a no-fold design, which means the entire website is one long scroll. Users simply start at the top and work their way down. Sometimes, web pages are designed in such a way that users can easily pick out sections simply by scrolling, and this allows them to quickly find and read the information they want. Lastly, some sites are even turning to infinite scrolling, which presents an entire page of information in a loop that the user can scroll through over and over again.

When Too Much Scrolling Isn’t a Good Thing

In truth, the only time when too much scrolling is a bad thing is when the information on the page isn’t organized and well-thought. The entire purpose of the website is to deliver information to the viewer efficiently and in an order that makes sense. If you have to accomplish this by allowing your viewer to scroll, there’s nothing wrong with that. However, you have to break the information down into digestible chunks. Maybe the visitor doesn’t really care about how your product can clean carpets; he or she is more interested in using your product to clean clothes. By sectioning off information into pieces, scrolling can actually make your website better.

Using Nav Bars Appropriately

Finally, there’s one more thing you can do to make certain that too much scrolling doesn’t negatively impact your conversion rate. Navigation bars are vital to your visitors’ ability to find information, so make sure you’re using the properly to section off your site. For example, if you’re using an infinite scroll loop to tell a story, place horizontal and static navigation bars at the bottom of the screen. This way, visitors can quickly and easily jump to any part of the story they’d like.

Too much scrolling can be a bad thing in some situations, but this is only true when you fail to properly deliver your content. It’s possible to turn even infinite scrolling into a gorgeous work of art that’s easy for your visitor’s eyes and mind to digest. Just use the right imagery, fonts, and navigation bars, and scrolling can truly pay off.