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I am in the process of designing a landing page for a software product. I will be listing all the features of the software on the page. Each feature will be contained withing a div of height 280px and there are 10 features.

My question is : is it better practice to have a very long page or to implement a horizontal content slider to keep the page short?, and has there ever been any research into this(articles I found we're quite poor)?

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Most mouse scroll wheels are better at vertical scrolling than horizontal scrolling. A simple vertical list is the most accessible arrangement, and that also translates easily to tablets and phones.

So unless there's something compelling about horizontal scroll in this case, I'd go with the simpler solution.

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There are two main factors in your decision: the order of data presentation and the ease of use.

The first part (data presentation) depends on the hierarchy of these features. If they are all of equal importance, then a horizontal layout is the best presentation of the features. A long vertical list implies a definite order of the items from first to last/top to bottom/most important to least important.

Usability would depend on how you implement both options and would probably require some user testing. For example, a horizontal scrollbar that requires the user to click on a button to view the next feature would be much more difficult to skim quickly, compared to either a horizontal or vertical layout that allows quick scrolling with the arrow keys.

(Trying to find good references to back up my opinions - I will comment later if I can find something.)

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A horizontal list also gives a definite order of the items — left-to-right — and if scrolling is required, that will strongly emphasise the order, since horizontal scrolling is much less familiar than vertical. –  PLL Nov 8 '12 at 6:25
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