Marketing people love them, web designers adore them. But customers hate them. Worse: they ignore them: the moving sliding images, the carousels that occupy the center of so many websites. Who needs them? Not the visitors. Not the customers. They distract, they get in the way of the task of the customer. Here is why you have to get rid of them.
WHAT DO THE • A documented case: ND.eduMETRICS University of Notre Dame, Indiana, USSHOW?
THE ND.ECU • On a sample of 315.655 pages shownCASE • 28.928 clicks or less than 1% • Of those 84% on the 1st position, the rest had almost no clicks
WHAT DO • “Fancy format” very often is not evenOBSERVATIONS looked atTEACH US? • They look like banners, mostlyJAKOB • Lower accessibility: often gone beforeNIELSEN: the click • Not enough time for the not very literate • Not enough time for the non-native speakers and • They irritate: visitors don’t like things to move out of their control
WHAT DO • Almost all of the testing I’ve managedEXPERTS SAY? has proven content delivered via carousels to be missed by users. Few interact with them and many comment that they look like adverts and so we’ve witnessed the banner blindness concept in full effect. Adam Fellows • In test after test, the first thing the visitor does when coming to a page with a large carousel is scroll right past it and start looking for triggers that will move them forward with their task. Craig Kistler • Because it moves, users automatically assume that it might be an advertisement , which makes them more likely to ignore it. Jakob Nielsen
Usability Test • What did the test team observe withquestion by participants who couldn’t completeJakob Nielsen: the task?“Does Siemenshave anyspecial dealson washingmachines?”
Carousel is being ignored: “No time to read” Promobox: • Not been noticed • Right column, less visible • Irrelevant content: “Rewarding.Life.Style”
WHAT DO THE Jakob NielsenCRITICS SAY? • Visitors have become banner-blind • Carousels, accordeons, sliders are conversion killers Gerry McGovern • When it looks like an ad, it’s being ignored • Marketing often gets in the way of the customer’s task. Toon Lowette: • The Internet is essentially a text media: words guide us on the path to the completion of our task
SO, WHY DO • Web designers think they’re hotTHEY EXIST? • Marketing people adore them • Very often: because of a lack of agreement on the home page priorities • Or a lack of convincing power to get the right priorities Does this type of meeting look familiar?
A carousel! Not much room, and we’re not yet there…I’ve got an idea And me Me too My department is the most important. I HAVE to be on the home page. A happy ending. But “design by committee never fails to fail”.
Carousels are effective at being able totell people in Marketing/SeniorManagement that their latest idea is nowon the Home Page. Lee Duddell
• If we can’t prioritize, who shall be the victim? Why not the client?• A carousel typically is a patch for the weakness of a self-centered organization that doesn’t take the customer and his tasks seriously.• The carousel is the set of crutches that helps Ignorance to stand up.• Ignorance thinks to walk straight and swift, but everybody sees the crutches.• They look cool, the crutches. But they are crutches.
Small numbers change colour when thenext image appears. And you can pausethe carousel. Why would you, since thetop task on this page is ordering a railwayticket. That task is a handful already,without the diversion on the side. I preferthe railway company would improve thetask. I would save time at least two timesa week. And many others would too.
Coolblue is an extremely efficient web shop,taking care of customer service at all levels.Was this carousel a concession someone hadto make to someone else in the company?Numbers indicate where you are, and yes,you can pause the show as well.
In this example, navigation and tasks arepushed away with content-free content (asJakob Nielsen would say). Small imagesindicate the position in the carousel. The imageis just a part of the big picture, not relevant atall. No pause button.
Here, the picturesunder the carousel arebigger and a captiongives a clue of whatfollows. Good. Thenavigation with thetop tasks is fine.However, this homepage could make themmore prominent.
“All about your caralways just a click away”Why use a carousel forthat? How do they think Igot here, if not with amouse click? Stop thismarketing blah-blah. Getme to where I want! Andoh, the other positions inthe carousel were just asirrelevant. But beautiful.
• Offline marketing is about getting attention. Online marketing is about giving attention. says Gerry McGovern.• In the previous slide, the site keeps on getting attention, keeps on shouting. Stop shouting, I’m already on your website. Get me what I want.
Click to move on orback in this carousel.Good. But why would I? In this case, there was only one position in the slider. Clicking repeated the image. Pity. I badly wanted to see the cat version.
The city of Mechelenhas won severalawards already, andearned them. The siteis efficient and task-driven. And yet, acarousel. However,with text supportunder the image. The dots indicate: two positions in the carousel. Limited, nice. But why then not two still images? Allowing the curious eye to scan both?
Here, the carousel only showsmood images. No links, no text,no tasks. One third of the screensurface. This is “getting-attention-marketing”, but it onlydiverts attention. For tworeasons: images withoutcontent, and irritating becausethey move.
Here, the image in thecarousel changes, the linktexts stay put. But notelegantly: the colour changemakes the text hard to read.A couple of links are copiesof the titles further on. Why?
IF YOU • Show the next position only when theREALLY WANT visitors clicks to get itTO HAVE ONE • Give useful task orientated content(OR HAVE TOHAVE) • Show with words what is to be expected in the next positions • Randomize the first position, giving all positions equal showings • If temporarily there is only one position, don’t make it a carousel
CLEAR What they do need:HOME PAGESDON’T NEED • Simple navigation to the tasksCAROUSELS • Clear lay-out • Attention to the customer • One understandable promotion offer • No diversion • No moving images
TASK • Identify your visitors’ top tasks and tinyMANAGEMENT tasks • Measure how customer-centric the site isWITH • Measure how efficiently clients canTOON complete tasksLOWETTE • Design for successful navigation • Test, measure, tweak, test, measure, etc.AND GERRYMCGOVERN These are the challenges that Customer Carewords helps you with. Manage the task. Not the content, not the website. The task. Facts instead of opinions. Contact Toon Lowette email@example.com - 0032 474 285 849