April 23, 2010, Newsletter Issue #20: What’s the Best Layout for Your Website?

Tip of the Week

Content optimization, especially on your landing page, has as much to do with how your text is laid out as with what it says. Follow these tips to make it easy for your readers to stick with you.

Work above the fold – “The fold” is an old term derived from newspaper days (remember those?) when readers folded a paper in half for easy reading. Anything on the top half of the page gets top visibility. Today’s scroll bars make this concept equally important. Keep your most important, interesting, relevant information within the first 300 pixels of the screen – that is, on the part of the page that visitors view without scrolling.

Follow the “F” – Because people read through Web pages following an F-shaped pattern, anything on the bottom left of the page may get overlooked. Keep your most important message, the key benefits of your product or service, your company logo or the hottest news, on the lower fork of the F, toward the middle of the page.

Keep it simple – A simple design makes it easier for your readers to follow text-heavy material. Keep paragraphs short (3 -5 sentences) and use bold text on a white background for easy reading.

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Byron White