Apparently the jury is now IN and the ubiquitous banner slider that appears on almost every small business website – including mine – is now OUT!
“What the devil!” did I hear you just shout? “But everyone who’s anyone has a slider!”
Well no, apparently us interweb users just tune that slider stuff out because we know it’s crap and not worth looking at. While I haven’t performed the experiments and crunched the data myself, here are the thoughts of a whole collection of tuned in people who have, and what they reckon.
Your nifty banner is totally ignored!
Marketing Land says banner sliders kill conversions. Even though we humans have evolved to look at things in motion before anything else, we have now adapted to the notion that anything that moves on a website is likely to be an advertisement and we are literally blind to it! Nielsen eye tracking studies confirm that users totally ignore anything that even remotely looks like an ad, which includes your lovely rotating banner.
Marketing Land assert that people are on your website to find some particular tidbit of information and scroll right past your banner in their quest to find that info. The banner takes up too much valuable real estate because ‘above the fold’ really does matter.
Your banner is frustrating coz it changes slides too fast.
Instapage (and others) point out that sliders that move too fast without the ability to pause or control them creates frustration for your peeps. Slow that mofo down so we can read it!
Your banner sucks coz we can’t control it.
Conversion XL points out that most sliding banners don’t allow the user to navigate the slides and the user will lose trust in your website when they can’t control what’s going on. If your visitors lose trust with you then they are less likely to buy from you.
Don’t believe me? Checkout these sites with no sliding banners:
Does anyone even look at your banner slider?
Checkout your Google Analytics reports to see if your banner has been clicked on. Sign in to your analytics account then select Behavior > In-Page Analytics. I would love to show you a screenshot of my own but I just found out I had crappy old analytics code that now needs replacing. I’ll come back in a month and do so.
Wait… maybe I’m wrong, maybe sliders are awesome?
Hmm, why does Apple, the world’s most valuable company use a sliding banner on their homepage? Look:
If the world’s biggest company is still using a slider then how can they be wrong? Let’s break down what they are doing:
- Each slide shows for four seconds – enough time to see the damn thing.
- Each slide has very little text, only 3 words in fact. Easy enough to read in the time given.
- Each slide has good navigability; arrows on either side and a slide “menu” at the bottom.
- The banner stops sliding on mouse hover and on using the navigation. In fact it stops sliding the moment you interact with it.
- The slides are simple, one offer on each slide showing one product type.
Also, have you noticed what’s beneath the slider? Basically nuthin, just a few links. So there is really nothing else to look at other than slider.
I would venture if you want to use a banner slider then follow the above rules set by Apple. Here’s the screenshot again with the rules: