Heat maps and eye-tracking software are something of a saving grace for marketing. These tools enable us to gauge how users interact with our websites and what elements gain the most attention. These tools allow us to optimize our websites and content according to the browsing patterns and behaviors.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of marketing rules that became evident as a result of these studies.
Drop the Dead Weight
Any UX (user experience) developer can tell you that objects with a lot of weight determine how people interact with a website. Buttons and widgets hog a lot of attention, but you have to ensure that your site’s most eye-catching element holds the most important information. You might want your popping element to be a call-to-action.
If you are a marketer, it is common knowledge that as far as Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) go, only the first three rankings get serious attention. However, a recent study suggested that if a query begins with “how to…” the listings with the embedded videos are the ones that got the most attention, even if they weren’t the top three results.
Add a Face
Since birth, humans are trained to follow the gaze of others. Someone’s gaze can direct us to the location or the general direction of something. It seems that baby’s and women’s faces draw the most attention on websites. We would certainly recommend adding images as visual cues for what you want your customers to pay attention to.
Remember the F
According to Nielsen Group’s study, people tend to scan websites in the F – pattern. Essentially this means that customers will look at the content in the following order:
- Read the first line/paragraph from left to right
- Look only at the first words of the next few lines/paragraphs
- Read at the middle line/paragraph from left to right
- Look only at the first words of the remaining lines/paragraphs
As a result, make sure that you place your essential content on the left.
Forget the Fold
Numerous research has shown that placing important content above the fold is not even remotely as crucial as some people believe. In fact, they’ve shown that customers are more than willing to scroll as far down as the bottom of the page as long as the content is engaging. Don’t be scared to add below the fold; focus on your content and presentation instead.
Keep it Short and Sweet
Another study by Nielsen Group showed that people spend approximately 51 seconds on an email newsletter. Therefore, it is vital to convey your message to your customers very quickly. Don’t bore them with lengthy introductions or anecdotal happenings. Just get to the point!