Website designers use the phrase “above the fold” to refer to the area a user sees without having to scroll on their device, such as a computer, tablet or mobile screen. Research shows that you don’t have a lot of time to convey your message to online visitors before they decide if they will scroll down to view more content or navigate away from your webpage. To keep online visitor engagement, you must position your most important messages above the fold.
While you don’t need advanced design skills to position messages above the fold, you do have to determine the most important information to convey to your online visitors. Whether you are a corporation, small business, non-profit or any other organization, here are three common trends that almost all websites should keep above the fold:
A headline should not only be above the fold, but in big, easy-to-read letters. Studies show that the average visitor only waits seven seconds for a website to load, and then an additional four seconds to figure out whether your site is relevant. Make your headline meaningful to help people understand who you are, what you do and why it matters.
2. Phone Number
One of the most obvious ways to connect with a customer is through a phone number. However, a lot of people do not include it on their website. This practice may have originated from the idea the web would allow companies to shortcut talking to customers in person, but that is not the case for several successful businesses and organizations. Place your phone number on your homepage and remember that people should not be required to scroll or click to find it.
3. Call to Action.
Your call to action is defined by a response you want your website visitor to do next. It is the most important thing that needs to be above the fold as it helps you direct your users. For example, a call to action can be a “continue” button, a “buy” button, a link or even a phone number. Ask yourself, “What is the goal of my website?” The answer to that question should be your call to action—and your visitors should never be required to scroll down the page to find it.
This guest post is courtesy of Adam Barger, founder of WebStarts. Adam has more than a decade of experience with Internet marketing and entrepreneurship. In 2006, he founded WebStarts, a free website builder that has built and hosted more than three million websites. It offers its customers several online features, including domain names, customizable designs, search engine optimization and technical support. The newest feature of WebStarts is the Designer Platform, which helps other entrepreneurs start their own design and hosting businesses.