Website Headers – Big or Small?

Website Headers - Big or Small?

Everyone’s starting their own site some how, blogs especially. So how big should website headers be?

Display Real Estate

Let’s start by understanding the on screen real estate.

Here’s a screenshot at 1360 x 768 resolution.

Website Headers - Big or Small?

That’s what I got from my desktop but typically a notebook screen or smaller sized LCD comes at 1366 x 768 nowadays. Netbooks are always smaller in available screen.

While the screen resolution is 1366 x 768, browser display area is always much less.

Since we’re talking about the website’s header, width is usually not the issue but height is.

Website Headers - Big or Small?

After considering the browser interface, in the same that I’m showing – there’s the browser interface, Firefox Extension, the Norton toolbar, the Tabs bar on top on the top and at the bottom, there’s the browser’s status bar and operating system. It’s a typical setup, this is to illustrate how much reduced the display area is.

From top to bottom of the screen, that’s 768 pixels but after accounting all the other items mentioned, there’s only 540 pixels height worth of display area left.

Right and Wrong

I guess by now some of you are guessing that I’m going to say BIG is wrong, SMALL is the way to go………… well, NO.

It’s not the size that matters, it’s how you use it. ๐Ÿ˜€ Do it with a purpose.

For me, I like small headers (or should I use the word SHORTER) simply because I don’t like to scroll and I prefer my readers view the content immediately, especially those with less endowed monitor, especially those on notebooks and netbooks (horribly small screens are they.)

Take goldfries.com and also my food blog at buurps.com for example…….
Website Headers - Big or Small?

Small headers, just the name of the site and perhaps and ad or a simple decorative graphic.

As for large headers, take a look at Smashpop and Rames’ ๐Ÿ˜€

Website Headers - Big or Small?

Website Headers - Big or Small?

It’s amazing what these artists can do to their blog headers, a prelude to their interesting content. ๐Ÿ˜€ They even change it from time to time!

What’s Your Preference?

In the end, the header is about your style and preference. Will it be an avenue of expression? Do you have concern over the amount of scrolling to be done by visitors? It’s all up to you – make good use of it.

My thought – if you can’t make a large header look good, stick to the a small header.

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6 Comments

  1. quite an interesting article there. those artistry fellas sure go to great lengths to create their headers.

    the norm for gamer sites that i’ve seen and tend to lean towards is a minimalist concept, with everything smashed together as tightly as possible. at that point, maximizing readibility becomes key, while balancing it the absolute minimalist approach. all i can say its, its a real headache ๐Ÿ˜›

  2. i hate that smashpop, looks like GAY stuff or something?

  3. Hmm… Personally, I prefer less scrolling. Those tall header with fancy design required a lot of loading, could be annoying with slow internet connection.

  4. Author

    @strife – that i like

    @kenny – eh, so you have an issue with him? this is not the place for you to post hate content ya know.

    @LYC – i also prefer less scrolling………. and big header area mean I have to dress it up nicely, which takes time. ๐Ÿ˜› however in some sites, you see big header areas with a lot of white space – so minimalism + huge header area is possible, just need someone to get it tastefully done.

  5. Most of my headers are really basic. Just the title, description and maybe a search form on the right. ๐Ÿ˜€

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