According to Jakob Nielsen, we should avoid links that scroll to sections of a page, since users expect that links will take them to a new page.
Studies have shown that within-page links typically waste far more time than they save because users click back and forth multiple times to review the same material.
If you must use within-page links, tell the user that clicking the link will scroll to the page to the relevant section.
Only for very long pages, such as long alphabetized lists and FAQs, will the time saved be worth the confusion that within-page links can cause. Also, linking to a specific section on a different page is not as bad as using within-page links on a single page, since the users are taken to a new page.
Ideally, create separate pages for everything that serves as a link destination.
- Avoid Within-Page Links
- February 25, 2006
See also: Navigation (63) Links (19) Tips and guidelines (95)