The term “above the fold” comes from the newspaper industry where headlines and advertisements placed above the horizontal fold are known to attract more reader attention.
“The fold” refers to the bottom of the browser screen. Items “above the fold” are visible, while those that are “below the fold” aren’t visible unless the user scrolls. The viewable region / fold location varies from user to user since there are a variety of devices and window sizes.
Importance for Website Design
When users visit your website, they immediately see the regions of your page that are above the fold. Your website’s design should put the most important information and calls-to-action above the fold. Good designs also make it clear to users that there is more content if they scroll.
Important for Search Engine Marketing
If search engine users don’t see your links above the fold, they may not visit your site. This applies to both SEO and search engine advertising. Your goal, assuming that it’s economical, is to have your links at or near the top of search results page. Higher natural ranking and higher (or more effective) bidding push your links up higher on the page.
Please let us know if you have a term you would like to see added to the Internet Marketing Glossary.