We would be remiss if we did not occasionally remind our clients (and all marketers) to respect the short attention spans of today’s online audiences. This is true for any content marketing. We address it here, more specifically, related to limiting characters and pixel counts for text and images that our clients can add to our health assessments (HRAs) so completion rates remain high.
To be blunt, text bloat decreases completion rates. Therefore, make sure every word you add to the HRAs (or any content marketing) is important. Let’s explore this aspect of user experience a bit deeper.
Short Attention Spans
If you believe the research, the already short attention spans of modern digital consumers have shrunk to 8 seconds or less.
Now, these stats are not universally accepted. But, I would say most of us can probably agree on these characteristics of typical web users:
- Most don’t like to read. They prefer to skim.
- Many won’t wait for slow web content.
- They want quick interactions with clear, concrete benefits.
- And they don’t want to work too hard for those benefits.
Fortunately, we have designed our v3 health assessments to fit these types of “consumerism” expectations. However, it is critical that you keep them squarely in mind when adding your own custom content where allowed.
Our newest (v3) HRAs have up to 15 areas for custom text and up to 7 opportunities for custom graphics. We want you to make the HRAs your own. A complete listing of these features with character and pixel limits can be found here.
To save you some time, (see how I respected your short attention span , ) here are a few examples:
- Title bar, intro, and HRA name
- Background image
- Splash screen header and body copy
- Splash screen image and logos
- Call-to-action text
Custom Text – Optimize for Short Attention Spans
Firstly, the best advice I ever read about writing copy was to take your final draft and cut it in half. And then cut THAT in half. We must be painfully miserly with words online. Not surprisingly, it might be helpful to tag-team this chore with a wingman. If you are like me, it is far easier to condense someone else’s writing than your own.
Other quick tips:
- Concentrate on readability
- For example, keep words and sentences short
- Also, use transitions to link ideas together
- Avoid idiomatic language
- Give your audience what they actually want (HINT: individualized help with a health concern)
Custom Graphics – Optimize for Page Load Speed
While our new HRAs have been optimized for speed, it is important to make sure you are using custom graphics appropriately to respect short attention spans and mitigate impact on completion rates.
- Avoid using too many graphics, or overly large pixel counts (see our posted limits)
- If possible, avoid grainy images that do not compress well.
- Avoid previously compressed graphics to keep image quality high.
- Make sure your graphics are providing value to the intended audience.
Remember, page load speed is still important. Most users are probably on mobile devices. Mobile use is even more impacted by short attention spans than desktop.
In conclusion, to provide the best consumer experience possible, and to avoid decreased completion rates, it is important to use custom text and graphics sparingly so as not to push the limits of short attention spans.