1 Good Reason – Social Marketing

Social and Digital Marketing for the New Reality

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So tell me about your big F, Part 2

April 2nd, 2008 · 4 Comments

This is the second part of this blog post. It’s generally accepted that you should read Part One before you read Part Two but in this case it’s not terribly important. So you can do what you want, (as if you needed my permission to do that anyway.)

BLUF: Check out your big “F” and see what your visitors are going to see first on your blog. Remember every link that you put on your blog or website is cataloged by Google, etc.

Last week I talked about a couple of points I want to expand upon here. First, that every link on your page matters to the success of your website. And second is that you should understand how people view web pages so you put the most important information (to you) in the most viewed position.

Every Link on your Page Matters

Let’s begin with a little basic SEO; The base currency on the web is links. Google et. al. count the number and types of links you get from other websites to judge the importance of your site. The best kind of link is a text link like this: The Best Blog on the Net!

Now you can imagine that Google was swamped by the “Black Hat SEO’s” out there. Once they realized this, they then went out and built “Link Farms“. I’m not going to bore you with the details but there is real Electronic Warfare going on out there. As I write this Google appears to be winning but the tide of battle is fickle and can turn at any moment.

While this interesting why does it matter to a blogger or website owner?

Simply that every widget that you add and every link you choose to include in your blog (or website) is measured and cataloged by Google etc.

So give some thought to how you link, and whom you link to. There are many excellent discussions on Linking tactics that you can peruse if you’re having trouble sleeping.

Now the second and probably most important point which really begins with a question:

What the hell is this?

Eye Tracking Chart

My friends this is known as an Eye Tracking Heat Map. It shows where people look when they view a website for the first time. Here’s the most important thing you must know about it:

People almost always read a website in an “F” pattern.

In the images above the more Red the more often and longer people look at that spot, the more Blue the less often and shorter people looked. (Hence; heat map showing red as hotter interest.)

So the question for you is, what is at the top of your “F”?

The top of my “F” is my subscription form for this Blog. Although it’s not gathering the hordes of subscriptions I had hoped, it’s doing ok. Why don’t you prove me wrong and put your address in there right now? Oh go on! It won’t hurt, and I really really really promise not to spam you (much)!

Rule of Thumb

1 Good Reason rule of thumb:
Put your most important stuff in your Big “F” and your site will be easier for people to navigate.

Tell me about your big honking “F”

Tanks for Reading,

Chris

Tags: Reasonable Techie Advice · Reasons For Net Marketing

4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 @netd // Apr 2, 2008 at 10:03 am

    Funny about your subscription spot note because I’ve sort of stopped looking in that position as soon as I register a top navigation bar. Images still attract me, so maybe combine the two. I appreciate the eye-tracking map and will share that one. Thanks.

  • 2 Chris // Apr 2, 2008 at 11:26 am

    NetD,
    I still need to work on the subscription box. I think in reality that my “F” starts inside the white area. People block out the left and right hand columns when it becomes apparent that they aren’t main content.
    But for the first time visitor perhaps the F still holds? I’m not sure.
    Chris

  • 3 Tejas Joshi // Apr 19, 2008 at 7:37 pm

    I never look at the place where you subscribe form is. I start at the heading of the post – “So tell me about.. ” and then I have observed I follow the F pattern only for the content part. But left most strip of adv is never part of that F. I suspect many savvy users must be doing the same way. Anyway, great post! You got me hooked with this post, I have subscribed you in google reader now.
    _Tejas.

  • 4 Chris // Apr 20, 2008 at 9:58 am

    Tejas,
    Thanks for the compliment. You are right that people do ignore the advertising columns. So with 1GoodReason people will start their “F” in the middle. That’s why my Subscription Box is white to visually bring it into the center column.
    I don’t want to put a subscription box in the content I think that’s a little bit too much. Thanks for subscribing.

    Chris

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