The average attention span of a goldfish is 9 seconds. For humans, that number has dropped to 8. This is the challenge digital marketers face today: a terminally distracted audience. According to recent research, over half of web visitors only look at a page for 15 seconds or less. This article will help you raise that number.
Still got your attention? That’s because you know how crucial it is to keep web visitors around.
With more browsing options than ever before, users leap from page to page, only pausing for content they really want and blazing past the rest. You don’t want your value to be overlooked, so here are some tips for catching these moving targets.
Describe Your Value in the First 10 Seconds
Websites are negative aging, which means the longer someone stays, the less likely they are to leave. Most people decide to stay or leave within the first 10 seconds of viewing a page, so you must show your audience why it will be worth sticking around as soon as they begin reading.
Address Specific Needs
Google search behavior, coupled with their Hummingbird update, has shifted toward long-form keywords: searches that are complete phrases. For example, rather than search for “buy shoes,” people are searching for “where to buy shoes in the Cincinnati area.” And Google, of course, has learned how to serve the right results to these longer queries.
This means that people have become accustomed to finding exactly what they are searching for. If your page isn’t tailored to a specific need or question, you’ll lose organic traffic, and visitors you do get won’t take the time to sift through your site for the one piece that answers their question.
Think from your audience’s perspective. What are they trying to find?
Length is Less Important Than Readability
Contrary to popular belief, longer pages do not always hurt engagement and actually lead to increased inbound links.
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What is important is how easy your page is to read. Long blocks of text with no other stimuli can be intimidating and may cause viewers to leave right off the bat. Visuals and proper organization help immensely.
Long story short, the demands of digital audiences are getting higher and higher. It’s a live-or-die type of environment. Don’t lose engagement because of a bad first impression. Clock’s ticking!
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