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Marshall's Web Tool Blog

Training and Consulting in New Tools for Effective Web Use

This site is an archive of posts that I hope you will find useful. Please visit my new site at Marshallk.com.

Site Redesign: Side-Bar Switcheroo

I decided while designing some blogs for a couple of clients that I really did need to be puting sidebars on the left-hand side instead of on the right. Several people have told me it is more visually appealing on the left, and more likely to be looked at. I fill sidebars with content that is very important to me, so I want to make sure people look at and use them.

It brought to mind a visual attention study described over at EyeTools Research. They used this eye-heat map to demonstrate that most people who are running ads on the right hand side of their blogs are wasting their time because most people never look there. I wondered upon seeing this wether that's because the right hand side naturally doesn't get attention, or wether people aren't looking at it when there are ads there.

At the same time, the left side doesn't get a whole lot of attention either. So who knows what it means. One way or the other, I think taking my sidebar to the left is a good idea. Any feedback on how it looks now?


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