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Do we read web pages in an F-shaped pattern?

SURL has done an eyetracking study to investigate whether users follow the F-shaped pattern suggested by Jakob Nielsen when reading and scanning web pages.

Findings from the study:

- When reading or scanning text, users appear to follow by the F-pattern
- When scanning a page with a grid of product pictures, the F-pattern doesn't seem to hold true
- On the product picture pages, the area above the fold received significant more attention than the area below

The authors suggest that we should structure web pages so that important content falls in the F-pattern and that important or featured products on picture pages should be positioned above the fold.

Links:

  • Eye Gaze Patterns while Searching vs. Browsing a Website Open link in new window

Henrik Olsen - January 30, 2007

See also: Research (129)  Web page design (40)  Eye-tracking (14) 

 

COMMENTS

Here's some more criticism of Nielsen's F shape (from Etre)

Simon | February 01, 2007

 

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