A new usability study done by Jakob Nielsen confirms the important of the first 2 words or about 11 characters of a website’s links and headlines.
On Web and intranet pages, lists occur in many places, including:
- Search engine results pages (SERP)
- Lists of current or archived articles, headlines, press releases, and other news items
- Product listings
- Table of contents
- FAQ pages
- Bulleted or numbered lists, checklists, task steps on a help page or job aid, etc.
Users typically see about 2 words for most list items; they’ll see a little more if the lead words are short, and only the first word if they’re long. The testing revealed that the best links follow principles for effective Web content.
- Use plain language
- Use specific terminology
- Follow conventions for naming common features
- Front-load user- and action-oriented terms
Poor link characteristics:
See the complete results at: http://www.useit.com/alertbox/nanocontent.html