Since we posted last week about things to consider when preparing your website for the holiday season, it seems appropriate to share a great infographic about what gets seen, where, and for how long.

The impetus behind the research was originally to give internet advertisers some insight into where ads perform best to they can maximize their placements. Chartbeat analyzed the behavior of 25 million users web-wide and gathered their findings into the infographic below, which shows where the most visitors spend the most time on a webpage. (The graphic also features whales, so it’s pretty much a winner in my personal book.)

 A few key insights to look for:

The percentage of visitors to a website who show some form of engagement is 66%. Of those, the average amount of time spend actively engaging is 47 seconds.

The percentage of engaged visitors (shown by the red dots) Increases from 0 pixels to 500 pixels down the page, and then decreases steadily after that. So the best chance for engagement is right above the “fold” of the website. (Where you’d have to scroll down to see more.)

The number of seconds spent on a particular part of the page, however (shown by the yellow dots), steadily increases up to 1750 pixels from the top, and then drops off only slightly below that. This means that while you may have more engaged people interacting above the fold, those that do scroll down will spend more time engaging with the content.

What’s the moral for your website layout? Make a list of the elements and messages on your website and organize them into Must See, Would Be Nice, and Extras (or whatever categories you like). Put the Must See items just above the fold – or 500 pixel mark. Put the next most important things, those that you want people to spend more time with, a little further down. Finally, toward the bottom of the page you can include the extras that not everyone needs to see. Things like your copyright, contact details, employment, etc. will be found either way by the people who are engaged enough to look for them.

Without further ado, the Chartbeat infographic! Thanks to Adweek for posting.