What is a subtle way to tell the user there is more content below?

I have a transparent arrow pointing down with a label: "More Content"

The arrow will disappear when the user swipes or when the timer shoots.

My problem is that while I was using the site, I found it a little annoying after viewing a couple of pages. It has a redundancy feel to it.

Any ideas for an alternative? Thanks.

  • 2
    Make sure that a scrollbar is visible? – Paŭlo Ebermann Mar 31 '15 at 16:08
  • 1
    @PaŭloEbermann That is near impossible on a mobile device, since the bar is hidden (most of the time) so you can use all the width of the screen to have content. But it is a good solution for desktops. – Ismael Miguel Mar 31 '15 at 17:12

A few options:

  • You could leave a little bit of content above the fold where possible which will help to indicate there is more below.
  • You could build anchored links into the copy that will take people down the page e.g. 'We're amazing designers' with the word designers taking users down the page to the portfolio section.
  • An arrow can feel tired I agree. Maybe it could blink on and off as an alternative.
  • The arrow could be an easter-egg in itself so that each time you click it it animates or morphs into something unusual so that after a while user just want to click on it to see what happens.

Just a few thoughts there but it's also worth not getting too hung up on users navigating via scroll. It's a bit of a myth that people won't scroll as we're all pretty web-savvy these days and know there is often content below. Especially with mobile browsing where scrolling long pages to digest the content is the norm.

If having to scroll past some gratuitous header on each page is getting frustrating then maybe it's worth removing or shrinking the header/banner content at the top?

If the content is hidden in a drawer or via a tab etc then it's a whole different conversation but I think you're just talking about taking people down the page. Hope that helps :)

  • 3
    Bullet #1 is my go-to solution. If you want people to know there's more content below (or above or over there on the side), then show a little of it. – Ken Mohnkern Mar 31 '15 at 12:43
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    @KenMohnkern That would depend on screen size and content. Which would be impossible to get a fix on with just css and I don't like using javascript to adjust ui. But anyway +1 to chris for the options! – Jo E. Mar 31 '15 at 14:25
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    Detecting the fold is hard to do, so bullet #1 isn't the best option IMO – Zach Saucier Mar 31 '15 at 16:50
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    @Chris My point is that it's hard to have content partially showing like you suggest for every viewport size :) – Zach Saucier Mar 31 '15 at 16:56
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    To be honest, I would HATE (big capital letters intended) a blinking arrow to show more content. It's a serious webpage, not some click-bait add! The first option also seems to me that is the best one. But please, no blinking stuff. Also, you would steal the users' attention from the content to an annoying and informationless part of your website. Do you want users to read your arrow or your content? – Ismael Miguel Mar 31 '15 at 17:09

It would be worth testing whether users actually scroll, to identify whether this is a real issue.

Consider using various visual cues as discussed above: content continuing below the fold is usually enough to prompt users to scroll.

Avoid full width horizontal lines, as these can sometimes cause users to think they are at the bottom of the page. Remember these can be caused by the end of an area of text or bottom of an image.

With regards the arrow becoming annoying: Could you not identify that a user has visited/scrolled pages previously in their session? then remove/hide the arrow on later pages?

  • This addresses the problem without relying on viewport size, which varies greatly. As such, I think this is the better of the options provided thus far – Zach Saucier Mar 31 '15 at 16:52
  • @Sheff Identifying that a user has visited previously is easy, BUT, wouldn't removing the arrow after showing it a couple of times would imply to a user that there is no content below since there is no arrow? - Or - Maybe it would make a user get used to scrolling down and not notice the arrow disappearing? Your thoughts? – Jo E. Apr 1 '15 at 4:19

make your page scrollable. i think that users will scroll if they are interested in the content with scrolling action.

half-visible content like photos, images will help user to understand there is more content.

Edited: If you have a horizontal sliding action, LinkedIn slider can be good option.

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