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This might not only be a user experience question but also a design one.

I am designing a corporate website and my manager didn't really like the first idea I presented.

I have to show a list of sentences and the title of the section with its subtitle.

I wanted to show the list of sentences in a more web friendly style rather than the old sequential and "text documents" style. Therefor I used a slider:

Large Image Image with large title text and small subtext overlayed on top. Sentence one is in a box below the image with arrows to either side indicating the ability to navigate to other sentences

From his point of view, the list of sentences loses it since it is shown sentence by sentence and he prefers to show it all together. His suggestion was to move the title of the section to the bottom and use the space above to show the sentences in a kind of box. This is what I came up with (which I personally find horrible):

Large Image Image with a blue box containing sentences overlayed on the image. Large title text and small subtitle text in a box below the image.

Not only do I think it's a worse design, but also I believe the title of the section should be at the very top as is the main text the users should be reading.

What would you recommend? Is there any other possible way to show a list of sentences that is more user-friendly and useful?

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I prefer yours, but don't like the slider too much either. It requires interaction when there probably shouldn't be any. Don't put the "sentences" over the photo, especially not with a large colored background. If these sentences need to be on the page, find a way on your original to include more of them. Possibly "just" a centered list in the location and in place of the slider. –  Marjan Venema Aug 27 '13 at 17:35
    
Help others to help you. I don't think you'll get anything of a value directly related to your problem without sharing some examples of these sentences (the real ones to end on the site). There are a multitude of UX concepts and solutions that may apply here, but you can't advise someone on how big a button should be without knowing what the button actually does! –  Izhaki Aug 27 '13 at 22:53
    
Do you have real content you are working with? If so, focus on that. As it is, this all feels very arbitrary and generic and stock-photo-ish. Make sure these sentences have purpose and emphasize that purpose. –  DA01 Aug 28 '13 at 3:12

3 Answers 3

up vote 4 down vote accepted

The question is: in what way is this copy (the sentences) relevant for the users of this website?

If it is information that is very interesting for them, then by all means show all of the copy at the same time; don't hide it from the users.

However, from the look of your images, it appears that this page is introducing a section of your website. In that case I would say: keep the copy short and to the point; one sentence should be enough to introduce a section.

Don't expect users to go and explore your 'sentences' using the arrows — they will simply skip this area and scroll down to the rest of the page to see if there is any interesting/relevant content for them.

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It's not introducing it. It's just the section itself. There's no much text for it, only those sentences. But this is an slider with multiple sections inside the same area, all pretty similar and with the same background image size. –  Steve Aug 27 '13 at 12:30
    
I was referring to a section of your website. When you click on the chair icon in the top nav, I assume you would arrive on this page. I would then expect the top area of this page to explain what the 'chair section' is all about. –  Saskia Idzerda Aug 27 '13 at 13:27
    
Still being the content and not an introduction :) The icons on the menu just scroll down the page to each sections. There won't be more info to explain about the chair :) –  Steve Aug 27 '13 at 13:29
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I am sorry I misunderstood you twice. Now I guess I am missing the context of what these sentences mean for the user, and what, if anything, could compel them to click to see the next sentence. (As usual in UX, it boils down to: who is the user and what are they here for? Before you know that you cannot really say what the best solution is.) –  Saskia Idzerda Aug 27 '13 at 15:16

First off, I would recommend not using a carousel: http://shouldiuseacarousel.com/

Especially so in the context you're using it in. It seems that you have a navigation bar on top that acts as anchor links to jump the user to different sections of what I'm assuming is a long page full of content. Hiding content inside a carousel that is halfway down a page simply doesn't make sense.

If the content is worth showing, then find a way to include it in your layout. And make sure it isn't the way your boss is asking for, because that is horrible. ;)

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+1 Thanks for that information! It's good to see those kind of studies. I've also been reading this one Although in my site I only have one "section" with carousel and it doesn't move automatically, it works with arrows. (or keyboard keys) –  Steve Aug 28 '13 at 8:56

Text could be placed like pictured.
enter image description here

But most people will not read it, so it's better not to have text at all. Nice big detailed pictures grasp eyes, short big title is read fast, so every slide communicate to a user.

Having a lot of text:

  • Increases cognitive load, as users try to read the text but picture is a more powerfull attractor. So it could be hard to focus on text.
  • Increases significantly displaying time for each slide, so carusel looses its advertising effect. To calculate time for each slide look at the answer.

Probably the disadvantages could convince the manager.

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As this is not an introduction but just the content itself, some text is needed to explain the topic although I always try to reduce the text as max as possible. I like the position for it! –  Steve Aug 27 '13 at 12:33

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