In addition! In addition! Read all about it! Extraordinary news is published on the front page of the newspaper for maximum exposure, a strategy that helps communicate important news quickly and helps publishers sell their newspapers faster. Similarly, law firm websites can use the “above the fold” technique to provide a better user experience and increase engagement.
What does “above the fold” mean?
The phrase “above the fold” refers to the highest location where the most important information is usually displayed.
It originated in the way newspapers are often folded in newsstands, with the front page folded in half to reveal only the top half of the front page. Because the most visible part of the newspaper is the top part above the center fold—above the fold— this is where the most important news is published.
In a numerical sense, “above the fold” refers to content that is seen on a site before scrolling down.
How does “above the fold” affect digital content?
The “above the waterline” principle affects both a user experience of digital content as well as a search engine perception of this content.
First, consider your website visitors. The content that appears on your website before the first scroll is absolutely essential. Study after study has proven that the majority of users interact with content above the fold. In reality, website visitors spend 80% of their time on information above the fold before it scrolls down. Users only devote 20% of their attention to content below the fold.
Second, we have to consider ranking on Google. In previous years, it was true that the search engine favored content towards the top of the page, but today this is no longer the case. Thanks to AI and natural language processing, Google has become smarter.
The search engine can now understand what your website is about wherever the keywords are. Placement above or below the fold should not affect SEO, although it is important that some content is always placed above the fold to provide information to visitors when they arrive at your site. Last year, Google’s John Mueller explored this topic in a SEO Office Hours Session – see 55 minute for insights.
Tips for successfully implementing this principle on your website
So how do you design a website according to the “above the fold” principle? Above all, remember that we design for users. Help your website visitors easily find what they need by locating the most important information at the forefront.
You can include the following information above the fold on your website:
- Who are you
- What are you doing
- How are you different
- Call to action
- Intuitive menu navigation for further exploration when needed
Review and next steps
“Above the fold” is a helpful reminder to place your website’s most important content at the top, because that’s where most people will spend their time.
By being strategic about what information you post at the top of your web page, you can improve a user’s experience. A better user experience helps visitors get a good impression of your brand while making it easier for them to contact you.