Why you would not want to use automatically scrolling sliders on a website

Study after study and test after test has revealed that sliders, particularly scrolling sliders, are a ‘fail’ in the web design world.

  • Only 1% of people actually click on a slider
  • People simply ignore your slider, because it triggers banner blindness
  • They slow down your site, negatively impacting your SEO and conversion rate
  • They don’t always work well on mobile devices
  • They push your content down and force users to scroll to find the point of your website
  • They look like advertisements so people ignore them
  • Moving objects are too hard to focus on
  • They ignore a user’s need for control and self-paced reading
  • It dilutes your message, because there are multiple messages on your homepage
  • They lessen the importance of what really matters

Have a look at http://shouldiuseacarousel.com which explains why not to use a slider. This simple website does an excellent job of showing the statistics, as well as triggering the annoyance that automatically scrolling sliders usually evoke.

A no-slider home page can work and be less confusing to users. Great illustrations and a clear headline can better explain your most important selling point. You don’t need to remove graphics altogether in this ‘top spot’; you can keep it to one static image, since that’s all the user needs to make their buying decision.

Or you could have several images with manual scrolling enabled. Manual scrolling through images or advertisements is very different from the regular slider you find on a lot of sites these days. Nothing moves on its own accord. The user has complete control and the images can be viewed by the user at their own pace.

By showing what your business is about and what product or picture deserves that front page “shine” you will give people a far better feel of your business than an automatic scrolling slider ever could.

Just because your competitors have sliders, doesn’t necessarily mean you have to copy them. You’ll be a step ahead by leaving the slider out and going with a higher-converting alternative.

These days, my general rule of thumb is that unless a client specifically requests a slider, I will use an alternative way of presenting their product or interest in the top spot of the home page.


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