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Why does the page always scroll vertically?

Why does the page always scroll vertically? Of course, first declare that I only consider the big screen,The screen is always wider than it is tall,so I think horizontal scrolling is good also.But only a few pages scroll horizontally, why?

Top comments (3)

iamschulz profile image
Daniel Schulz

It's traditional and an expected behaviour.
People are so used to vertical scrolling that they made even mice with vertical scroll wheels :)

A more founded answer would be reading text, which benefits more from vertical than from horizontal space, because you can stretch a text block infinitely into the y-axis without sacrificing readability. If you'd were to stretch into the x-axis (or even fill the horizontal space on a large monitor) you'd have to resort to multiple columns, which are vertical spaces as well.

It's a common recommendation not to stretch your texts wider than 80 characters, because it becomes harder to find the beginning of the next line while reading.

norbertb29 profile image
Norbert Bartos • Edited

Yes, thats a good question and an interesting idea. I don't know any reason why they did in this way in the past (maybe coming from terminal? :D ), but nowadays around 50% of the users are using mobile devices to browse websites which is a good reason to keep this vertical scrolling behaviour. They are holding their devices in portrait mode so we can show more content in the screen's viewport if the scroll body is aligned vertically. Also it's much easier to make scroll gestures vertically on phone using one hand + you can add additional information by extending some sections with horizontal scroll (like an image gallery or carousel) and that's what makes it a nice experience.

mabla0531 profile image
Matthew Bland

Never thought about this. Good idea though, if I ever become a web dev (doubtful) I'll try this style out