Friday, 12 February 2016

How can infinite website scrolling impact customer experience?

We all know that this is the age with the trend of single-page websites and infinite scrolling. Websites in this modern age have been developed immensely with images, videos and animations to terminate the boredom from the sites with clustered text. Scrolling through the social media with faster internet is much cool. But is it something that is preferred by everyone?
Below are the pros and cons of long-scrolling:

Pro: Embracing the power of storytelling

If you have a good story to tell, it can be proved to be advantageous as people love reading stories. Whatever the story maybe, whether it is of your brand, product etc., and users will scroll down the page. This will provide smooth reading to the user without letting them face the situations like interrupting for page to load.
Long-scrolling sites encourage creativity and also include elements like parallax scroll technology and animations that add elegance to the site.

Pro: Great for engagement

As story-telling is an excellent tool for encouraging engagement, it is important for businesses, brands and organizations. Hence, long-scrolling sites become capable of attracting more visitors and they will spend more time on your site.
Thus, the more you engage visitors on your site, the more they will be on your site and hence, the higher will be the conversion.

Pro: A Speedy Solution

We live in a hasty environment and there is no one who likes to wait. No one likes to wait for a page to load. At this time, long-scrolling sites prove to be a messiah. Scrolling sites do not provide any hindrance like waiting for the page to load.

Pro: Perfect for mobile & touchscreen

Most of the people today access internet through mobile and this affect things in 2 ways. First, the designers can find the creative ways to include specific information ‘above the fold’ on mobile sites without sacrificing any of the things. Second, scrolling is very natural action when it comes to a touchscreen device.
This won’t allow the users to accidentally click on the tiny links and get directed to an unwanted page.
As the laptops are getting smaller and lighter, longer scrolling sites are expected in the future.

Pro: A tool for indecision

A user does not have any idea what they are looking for when they come up to your website. However, it is not an action to which the user should be committed until and unless something attracts them.

Pro: Keeps things snappy

Long scrolling websites are beneficial in keeping things clean. It is recommended to have the brand message and unique selling point to be focused at on a single page rather than having the story scattered over several pages.
Though there are few advantages of long-scrolling websites, there are some cons too.

Con: Sluggish, Heavy Sites

It is previously mentioned that long-scrolling sites provide a speedy solution. But if the site contains too much of data, content, made up of media-intensive content, it can become sluggish and slow to load. This might result in the users getting frustrated.
To this, an entertaining loading animation can be a fun solution.

Con: Messy Navigation & Searching Woes

Navigation and search are the two basics in website design but to users of long-scrolling sites, it can be challenging. It isn’t always easy to establish a site where you can reach through a link to something else rather than ‘home’. Besides, it also makes bookmarking difficult.
You can maintain better UX for your visitors by coding ‘pages’ into the scrolling if you provide a lot of good information to digest.

Con: A tough call for analytics and SEO

Tracking analytics can be challenging if you have a single URL with lot of different content. You need to know which bits are advantageous to you while which are hindrance.
Different pages can be optimized with different keywords but only a limited number of keywords on a single page. Hence, this limits the number of keywords on your target.

Con: Overwhelm or Overload

It is a success if your users are engaged with your website and they are enjoying browsing it. Times come when they are looking for something specific. For such times, your site needs to be creative but you have to keep in mind that your site must not be overloaded with irrelevant information. Due to this, scroll-fatigue is possible. Hence, there must be optimum amount of content on your site.

Con: The Floating Footer

Many times, the footer provided on sites, especially on ecommerce stores, that provide information like contacts, shipping information etc., might frustrate the users while they scroll to find their desired bit of information. Hence they will need to flicker it away as more content loads.
To avoid this, designers must provide such information with a footer that is readily found on footer bar like sticky footer.            

Are long-scrolling websites suitable for you?

Long-scrolling sites are here for a long period of time due to increasing trend of small screen devices like mobiles and even tablets and this shows no sign of fading away.
But it doesn’t open you an entire route to blindly follow the trend without understanding its suitability for your website. You should consider the following:
  • If you have a goal oriented website where the users come and perform a specific task and some outcomes are expected, long-scrolling site may yield unpleasant results.
  • Not all content is suitable for long-scrolling. There are some content that is suitable only for traditional pages.
  • Long-scrolling proves to be a solution if you want to tell your brand story in a narrative manner.
  • If you are likely to add or subtract content frequently from your site, long-scrolling isn’t the proper option.


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