People Read Web Pages in an F-Shaped Pattern

Nancy Messieh, TNW:

According to a study by Jakob Nielsen, when we read a page, our eye automatically traces the text in an F-shape. The first paragraph is the one read in its entirety, as we trace the first long line of the ‘F.’ The next paragraph doesn’t fare as well, getting only half that much attention as we track about mid-way through the paragraph, tracing the second short line of the ‘F.’ The last step is simply to skim down the rest of the article, vertically.

If Nielsen’s study is anything to go by, I’ve pretty much maxed out any attention I’m going to get from you. It doesn’t really matter what I write from this point on, unless you’re absolutely fascinated by what I’m saying.

When I read this, I became totally conscious of the way I was reading. And yes, it was an F-shape.



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