We have seen infinite scrolling a lot since it was implemented for the first time and, as well as with other web design trends, it was used excessively. People say that by using infinite scrolling you are creating a better user experience, because there is more content loaded when the user has browsed (not read) the current one.
The trigger for anyone to use it like they are batshit crazy is for a big site to implement it. I don’t even know who it used it for the first time, but I’ll say that Twitter was one of the first pioneers of this trend. Now, don’t get me wrong, it worked really great for Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest or several others to implement this, but for almost the rest of the websites who use it just for the sake of using it, it didn’t.
It is a common technique to use instead of pagination, but there are a lot of people who are using it wrong. To use it properly, you will have to make sure that your content can be browsed easily and with a purpose by the visitors. On mobile devices, the usage of infinite scrolling is necessary to improve user experience, but on a desktop computer or a laptop, that is not necessarily the case.
Even if it is hated by a lot of web designers, infinite scrolling works quite fine on certain types of sites, but until a certain point and mostly on mobile.
People like the idea that they are controlling the information and they want to know where it ends so they can make better decisions regarding the content and what they were looking for. An infinite scrolling site may give them the sensation that they are floating and can’t reach anything.
The infinite scrolling experience can be improved. Infinite scrolling is not a basket case and it can be tweaked with certain techniques to improve the user experience and the overall usability of the site.
Instead of infinite scrolling, you could use a load more button to load more content only if the user demands it. You won’t solve anything by throwing at the user content that he didn’t specifically ask for. This is not the best solution and many condemn the usage of the load more button, as much as the infinite scrolling technique.
Using the load button is better, but there is a problem here that is really annoying. What do you do if you want to see the end of a list, or the last 10 items that are on it? You can’t do that with infinite scrolling because you would have to load an incredible amount of data which, most likely, your browser can’t support.
Also if you consider using a load more button, why not use pagination instead? I don’t know how others are, but I like to click on pages to see content, not scroll till the bottom of the internet.
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