The homepage hero slider, often known as a carousel, is a source of contention among SEO experts, designers, and management. Unfortunately, these features frequently don’t work the way you want them to, which may be affecting your conversion rates.
Why Hero Sliders Do NOT Work
Too Many Messages = No Message
When a user visits your website, they should be able to comprehend two things in the first three seconds:
- Who you are
- What you do
The visual portrayal of the hero should also conveyor arouse an emotional response that supports the message you’re conveying.
When a homepage hero has a slider with many offers, communications, or meanings, the greater message of the homepage may be lost on the user. Designers frequently employ a spinning carousel to get each department’s message on the home page. However, in most situations, this creates confusion and misaligned branding among website users.
Low Click-Through Rates
Many professionals have tried and tested numerous variations of homepage sliders to determine how users engage with them. At the end of the day, it’s exceedingly unusual for them to operate as intended (as Google states in its UX Retail Playbook). Only 1% of users clicked on a slider in most tests, and the top spot got the vast majority of those clicks.
Slower Site Performance
In 2021, you can’t afford a sluggish website! Especially now that Google has developed a method to quantify user experience components and utilize them in search rankings. The top three of these UX aspects may be significantly altered by a hero slider: Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) measures loading performance, or how long it takes for the largest element of the top fold to load.
First Input Delay (FID) measures interactivity, or how long it takes for the site to become interactive and clickable for the user.
Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) measures visual stability, or how much the content shifts while the page is loading.
A sliding panel that rotates while a user is reading content is one of the most aggravating elements of all. Any kind of movement that causes the user to be away from what he or she was doing can lead to irritation and annoyance. Users’ attention is also more readily drawn away by distractions. Furthermore, once you seize a user’s focus, they are unlikely to re-engage with the material at the same level of concentration or intent. This frequently leads to them missing crucial information or leaving the site entirely.
The concept of banner blindness is known to many marketers, yet they don’t always connect it with ineffective hero sliders. Humans are highly perceptive and pick up on patterns in websites. In the age of banner advertisements, these were frequently rotating carousels of commercial opportunities that were bothersome to look at. Because banner ads caused users to become irritated, they eventually learned to disregard them. Because hero sliders are frequently similar to banner advertisements, they generally receive little interaction and attention from the target audience.
A fundamental user experience guideline is that the user should be in control. Carousels and sliders are often inconvenient to use. They move automatically (typically without enough time to read the slide) and have little or ambiguous navigation symbols, making them tough to interact with and unpleasant to look at.
Not Design Responsive
There aren’t many slider plugins or add-ons that enable the slider to follow a responsive design. Because most website traffic now comes from mobile devices, and search engines only crawl the mobile version of a site, you can’t afford for a subpar slider to be the first thing a user sees.
What to Use Instead
Remember, the purpose of a homepage hero is to grab visitors’ attention for a short time and elicit or convey emotion connected to the business. After gaining users’ attention, they will naturally scroll down the page and engage with it by searching for themselves in the material.