Back in the '90s, usability guru Jakob Neilsen published this advice for Web developers:
"Selective attention is very powerful, and Web users have learned to stop paying attention to any ads that get in the way of their goal-driven navigation...Unfortunately, users also ignore legitimate design elements that look like prevalent forms of advertising. After all, when you ignore something, you don't study it in detail to find out what it is. Therefore, it is best to avoid any designs that look like advertisements. "
The Neilsen Norman Group released an update to this yesterday in the form of a 4-minute video with results of a new eye-tracking study they've done on 200 subjects using both desktops and mobile phones.
- Subjects ignored banners 65% of the time.
- Clues people use to identify ads include:
- Size and shape
- Presence of images
- Position on page (logos at top left were ignored 50% of the time)
- Carousels with or without ads were ignored 50% of the time.
Make important content accessible via main navigation, site search, and/or text links.
For more from the Neilsen Norman Group, see the Related Listings, below.
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