The F-Pattern

Yazar: enes koc Kategori: Net
Heat maps of how people look at websites 

The F-Pattern is how most people read Web pages, in the shape of an F: after looking at any interesting pictures, their eyes go quickly across the top of the page, then move down a bit and go part ways across the page and then move slowly down the left side. 

Ten seconds is all it takes for most to make a decision of whether to stay or go. And that decision is based on what they saw in the F. That is why Google calls the upper left-hand part of the page the golden triangle. It is the only part of the page that most will ever look at or read closely. It is there that you make your main points and gain their attention. 

The F-pattern has been proved by eye-tracking studies done on hundreds of people looking at thousands of different websites. Not everyone looks at every website that way, but it is how most people look at most websites. Even those not designed for an F-pattern. 

The Web is not print: many come to your page from a search engine or a link on some other website looking for something in particular. It might be something you said in passing. So they read your page in bits and pieces, not all the way through. Imagine if you wrote a book and found out that most people read it by using the index. It is like that. 
Most readers will:  

  • Read the first paragraph and part of the second.
  • Read the first two to three words of every paragraph, subheading or bullet that follows.

So when you write use:  

  • Inverted pyramid style: State the most important things first and then fill in with the less important things later. Like in a newspaper article or an ad. If you save the best for last and build up to it, like in a story or a joke or a scientific paper, it will be lost on most people. Because most will never get that far.
  • Front-loaded sentences. The first few words in a paragraph or a bullet have to be the important ones. You do not say, “Then in 1945 at a roadside diner one cold November night he killed his wife,” but, “He killed his wife one cold night at a roadside diner in November 1945.”
  • Topic sentences that come first in every paragraph. If people do not know what a paragraph is about up front, few will have any reason to go further. They will just jump to the next paragraph or just leave. The first sentence of the first paragraph must get across what the page is about.

Of course some will read your page all the way through, particularly regular visitors, so it still has to work at that level too. But even most of them made a decision at some point based what they saw in the F.

1 Yorum (comment) “The F-Pattern”

  1. Ali Fuat diyor ki:

    Güzel bir paylaşım olmuş. Bilgilendirici paylaşımın için teşekkürler.

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