Infinite Scroll Tips for Fashion Websites

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Are you fashionista's familiar with the Infinite Scroll on websites?

Infinite scroll has been called autopagerize, unpaginate, endless pages. But essentially it is pre-fetching content from a subsequent page and adding it directly to the user's current page.

The basic functionality is that, as the user scrolls through content, more content is loaded automatically.  For example, you can go to the main page of some fashion blogs and scroll down the page to view more posts.  You will see that as you progress down the page, more articles are added automatically as you quest to reach the bottom of the list.  If a page is using infinite scroll you would not find a need to click a "next page" button.  On many sites, you can eventually get to the bottom because they may have a limited number of posts.  However, if you try to scroll down the page on a large site such as Pinterest, you may be scrolling for an extremely long time before actually hitting bottom (if ever).  Another place that you can view an example would be Google Image search.  Google has implemented infinite scrolling for image search results but has yet to implement it for its general results.

With the popularity of social media, massive amounts of data are being consumed on a continuous basis; infinite scrolling offers an efficient way to browse the ocean of information, without having to wait for pages to preload or having to click a button to move to another page.  Rather, the user enjoys a truly responsive experience.

Responsive Web design (RWD) is a Web design approach aimed at crafting sites to provide an optimal viewing experience which is easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling.  The idea is for pages to flow nicely across a wide range of devices from mobile phones to desktop computer monitors).

Fashion blogs and other sorts of image intense websites are prime candidates for avoiding a scroll bar.  However, the system is not perfect for all sites.

Infinite scrolling typically promotes a better experience for users.  However, along with the good comes a little bit of bad.  Well, maybe not bad for the website viewer but possible bad for the website owner.  It is very possible (and probable) that solutions will be created, but at this time it appears that this method is not fully loved by search engines.  If you are interested in search engine optimization, using this method may have drawbacks.

The bottom line is that because the page is nearly never ending, the search engines do not appear to pick up all the data on the page.  A good way to see an example is to go to a the Google engine and check the cache for a web page that uses the infinite scroll.

To check the page cache you would put the following into the Google search box:

cache:www.REPLACETHISPARTWITHWEBADDRESS.com

Depending when you read this article you can test out our site on Google to see an example.  However, we may be removing the infinite scroll from our blog because the issue mentioned above.

cache:www.blog.apparelsearch.com

Another problem is in regard to something called Pogosticking.  Infinite scrolling often causes your position on the page to get lost. "Pogosticking" happens when you click away from an infinitely scrolling list and, when you return by clicking "Back," are brought to the top of the previous page, instead of to the point where you left off. This happens because the scroll position is lost when you navigate away from an infinitely scrolling page, forcing you to scroll back down each time.

When items are distributed across Web pages, they are framed and indexed and have a start and end point. The information is presented clearly and orderly. If we select an item from a paginated list and are taken from that page, we know that clicking "Back" will return us to that page (probably to the same scroll position). Our Web search will continue right where it left off.

If you scroll the same list of results with infinite scrolling, you are left without that sense of control because you are scrolling through a list that is conceptually infinite.  As you can guess this causes hardship for search engines.

To make sure that search engines can crawl individual items linked from an infinite scroll page, make sure that you or your content management system produces a paginated series (component pages) to go along with your infinite scroll.

Here are some tips on making this better for search engine marketing.

Making Infinite Scroll Search Engine Friendly

Make Infinite Scrolling SEO Friendly

Do users always want a never-ending stream of data?

Keep in mind that infinite scrolling may not be appropriate for every fashion site.

Again, we assume someone will figure out a way to make more improvements to this method. 

Learn more about fashion industry seo from our fashion terms section.

If you know more about this subject, please share your knowledge in the comment area below.
 
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