Reading and Scanning Behaviors

Most online readers scan first

Eye-tracking studies show that most people read web content in an F-pattern starting at the top-left of a web page before moving further down its contents.

Eye Scanning Heat Map Showing a 'F' Pattern of Usage

"F for fast. That's how users read your precious content." - Jakob Nielsen

Keep it short and simple

Web readers want to complete tasks quickly. Put the most important information in your first two paragraphs and make it easy for them to find what they are looking for by breaking up large chunks of text with meaningful subheadings, bolded keywords and bulleted lists.

Examples

Like this:

We need to replace this content

International & exchange students differential fees

Students who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents are required by Government regulation to pay an additional fee referred to as a "differential fee." Students who receive landed immigrant status must submit proof of residency to the Registrar's Office prior to the last day of December, April and August for each term.

Undergraduate students

  • Full-time undergraduate students are charged $3,630 per term.
  • There is a proportional charge for part-time students at the rate of $242 per billing hour.

Not this:

International & Exchange Students Differential Fees: Students who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents are required by Government regulation to pay an additional fee referred to as a "differential fee." Students who receive landed immigrant status must submit proof of residency to the Registrar's Office prior to the last day of December, April and August for each term. Undergraduate students: Full-time undergraduate students are charged $3,630.00 per term. There is a proportional charge for part-time students at the rate of $242.00 per billing hour.

Less is more

On the average web page, users have time to read at most 28 per cent of the words during an average visit; 20 per cent is more likely.
Source: Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox

Contact

Seminole State WebSupport
websupport@seminolestate.edu