Hello home page, goodbye infinite scroll

There is a problem on the interweb. Publisher home pages, traditionally the first stop when it comes to SEO, are receiving fewer hits.

Furthermore, this seems to be a long-term trend and is happening across the board. The reason for it is a change in online habits. In the past, users would have gone on to the homepage of their favourite site and clicked on the article they were interested in.

A hundred years ago, someone would have read their favourite newspaper in roughly the same way. The homepage is a modern representation of that.

Times they are a-changin’

More often than not, the front page for a news article is that of a third party such as Facebook, Google, Twitter or even direct links shared via email or text.

This is important for both publishing and content marketing. As the main landing page, a user is likely to click on more links if they go via the homepage. For a brand, this may mean the homepage of its blog.

There are a number of ways to fight this. This piece looks at Bloomberg’s efforts to replace the infinite scroll at the bottom of the page.

For the uninitiated, and those who have not looked at the Daily Mail for a while, an infinite scroll is where links are added to the bottom of the page. The article links in question are chosen via an algorithm.

Bloomberg Vertical has dropped this and chosen to reintroduce homepage content at the foot of the page. As a result it has seen traffic rise by 30 per cent.

The move proves that there is still a need for a homepage. You just have to bring it to the user rather than find a way of driving them there.

Hello home page, goodbye infinite scroll is part of Content24, the blog for London content marketing agency FirstWord.