DITCH TRICKERY: THUMBNAIL BEATS PROGRESSIVE DESIGN FOR MOBILE HOME PAGES

We all know that homepage design is crucial because it determines how quickly information can be located. This is even more critical on a small, mobile screen. Recent research by Leuthold and colleagues (2015) found that thumbnail design was the most efficient design for mobile browsing. In a between subjects study of 79 participants, the research team found that user satisfaction was greatest when presented with a simple and straightforward homepage design for news sites.

In the thumbnail design, the users first saw images for the various sections. The first page contained the section names with relatively large thumbnails or images. By tapping on the Technology section’s image, readers entered another page that listed the article headlines.

In the progressive design, the first page contained several levels. The first level had only the news section names. By tapping on a section name (Technology), readers could see the next content level–news headlines. When readers tapped on a news headline, the article summary appeared. Then, readers could tap on the article summary to read the full story.

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