F is for Pattern:

The F Pattern is the key pattern humans use to scan a website and it’s content.

 

Why do you need to know about it?

Understanding how website users read content online, and placing your most important content in the right places will help guide your users experience, and improve their engagement.

An extract from UX Mag article:

The top of the “F” is formed when users start at the top of your page, reading your headline and subsequent description of the article. Readers move their attention back to the left side of the screen and move their eyes down the page until they come across another heading or information that catches their eye. This information is usually the part of the content they were hoping for when they searched the topic and will spend some time reading it, creating the second horizontal line in the “F.”

Once the reader has gotten the bulk of the information they want, they will continue to scan the page, stopping if anything else catches their eye, but they are most likely moving on to another page of your site or leaving.

How can you use this pattern to your benefit?

UX Mag says:

Put the most important elements first. You know users will begin at the top of your page, reading across to determine what products, services, or information you are providing. Take the next most important information—or the info you want them to takeaway—and put it a little farther down the page where you know readers will pause and look through the content more slowly.

Create website expectations. Your readers may not know you are relying on F-pattern scanning methods, but they will feel like your content gives them what they want without them having to work too hard to get it. This expectation of layout allows your users to review your website at their own speed. Generate engagement with your sidebar. Your sidebar can have anything in it, from related articles, links to social pages, or ads. This breaks up the content for your users and gives them something else to consider about your business while they are scanning the content on the current page.

Read the full article here.

If you have a website or are planning to have your website redesigned, keep the F Pattern in mind – and place your important content and calls to action in all the right places.

EP.

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