Internet Ads – What works and what doesn’t [Eye Tracking/Usability Study]

Usbility guru, Jakob Neilsen along with Kara Pernice has launched his book, Eyetracking Web Usability that has findings from eyetracking studies that they conducted by bouncing infrared beams off a person’s retinas and recording head movements with a camera.

Interesting findings related to Internet Advertising

  • Participants in the study looked at 52% of ads that contained only text,
  • 52% of ads that had images and text separately and
  • 51% of sponsored links on search-engine pages.
  • Ads that imposed text on top of images got less attention
  • People in the study saw 36% of the ads on the pages they visited!
Eyetracking Study Heat Map
Eyetracking Study Heat Map

Findings related to Images on webpages

  • Users are more likely to grant a fixation to an image if they can tell from a peripheral look that they will be able to decipher it.
  • Iconic images do not get looked at if they are diffi cult to make sense of quickly.
  • People are more likely to look at images of an object set against a very simple background than against a crowded one
  • When users select a link to a photo section, they usually expect some value-add in that area, such as larger photos or ways to zoom in.
  • People also look slightly more at images of a single object— 26 percent—than at images with multiple objects—20 percent.
  • People look at unrelated or somewhat related images just 14 percent of the time

Download few pages of the book(pdf) (via)

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