I'm currently working on a website for my videography company and the design we are working with(my design) avoids vertical scrolling for desktop like the plague.

The idea is that scrolling only really benefits content that is made to be consumed in large scale i.e. a blog. With my company page, I don't really see a need to throw googobs of content at my users, just what is necessary. I want the website to feel like an application.

The advantage is that I can use a static, fullscreen background without any weirdness and I can place items wherever I please without really considering their importance (nav bar could be nearer to the bottom).

The disadvantage is it's different than what people are used to.

I have no real education or experience in this area and it's a style I don't often see.

Am a treading new ground in webdesign? Am I completely off-base and setting myself up for consumer alienation? Or am I just rehashing a very old concept that just happens to be esoterically useful?

4 Answers 4


I'm a developer so my perspective is a little different; however, I work with a lot of designers. Some designers produce really excellent usability; others not so much. I've found that one thing good designers consistently do is design around the content rather than content around the design.

Presumably your website serves a purpose. There's something it should do. Whatever that is dictates your content. Whatever that is drives your design.

Further, trying to squeeze your content to fit your browser window will almost certainly spoil the content for numerous users. If you're an art company (like videography) and your website looks dumb on my screen, I'm going to assume you're not a very good videographer.

For example, the links mentioned by Jason Towne . . . all of them look really awkwardly sparse on my 27 inch display. http://ringvemedia.com/ has a permanent "loading" background image that never go away unless I shrink my window.

Ultimately, again, I think it's best to ensure that your website serves its purpose with as broad an audience as possible. For a videographer, you probably want to convert visitors to paying customers I guess. Keep in mind people lose interest very fast. If you can't capture their attention in 10 seconds, they'll bail. If they can't find the information they want in 30 seconds, they'll bail.

They'll go to the next page that delivers the information they're looking for which may not be yours.

Also, consider SEO. If your page is so segmented that crawlers can't really figure out what it's about, then your page won't rank as well among the videographers that group relevant information into one page so that users searching for "atlanta videographer underwater" won't miss your website because your underwater page says nothing about your location.

  • Developers can design and understand UX too :) developer (for now)
    – Ben Brocka
    May 17, 2012 at 0:17

You will need to cater for scrolling in your web site design - as there will be some users who have their browse window shorter than your design calls for. You can't avoid this.


Designing a site with a goal of no scroll bars is fine as long as you don't make the user jump through all kinds of hoops to actually get to your site's content.

The disadvantage is it's different than what people are used to.

This is not necessarily bad as long as the site is intuitive and easy for the user to use and figure out.

On a side note, if your site is going to be viewable on a mobile device you may have a hard time making that work with the smaller resolutions especially in landscape mode depending on how much content you're trying to display. If I were you, I would try and make it so scrollbars were not needed but still support them for those users who have to have them.

Am a treading new ground in webdesign?

Not really. This kind of site design has been around for a while. Here are a few examples.

  • vanityclaire.com is actually a great example of what can go wrong with this concept. ringvemedia.com is the kind of flexibility I'm aiming for. I personally like it, but how does the average user feel about it (assuming limited hoops). My clients aren't web or design savvy.
    – Will
    May 16, 2012 at 15:14
  • @MobyD, If that's what you're going for then I don't see a problem with it. Notice how their goal is no scroll bars but in situations where they are needed (link) they support them. As an aside, if your clients are super-web savvy or technical I would create a separate "standard" design to present to them as well. It may not be your first choice in terms of design, but they are the customer and if they're more comfortable with "standard" go with it. May 16, 2012 at 15:23

Scrolling is a given behavior, so users will understand to do so if they need to.

On a separate note, are you planning on using responsive design so to downscale to varying screen sized?

  • 1
    I believe that I can avoid them needing to by keeping things simple so, while it's a natural response, they really shouldn't have to for the sake of them being inclined to. And yes, my goal is for the site to cater to device limitations and only avoid scrolling when I can.
    – Will
    May 16, 2012 at 15:23

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