There are a certain number of opposing views on the importance of a website’s ‘fold’ (the first content displayed in the browser’s viewable area – usually the top section of the home page). Depending on what source you rely on, this is usually seen to be anything between the first 500 pixels and 1100 pixels and beyond depending on screen size.
One view is that this is what our friends over the pond would call ‘prime real estate’ – all your call to actions, key messages, logos, navigation should be crammed into this area as to not to lose the visitors’ attention. The other view (and one we would like to align ourselves with) is that the first theory is outdated and misinterpreted. The web is now mature enough for the majority of visitors to have enough nous to work out that there is indeed more content down the page. Blogs are commonplace, blogs require scrolling. An outdated print-based term such as ‘page fold’ has no place in the cauldron of modern media browsing.
Of course, it would be unwise to fill the first part of your web page with ad banners with no branding that corresponds with your site. It’s up to the designers to educate their clients who may have preconceived ideas about the dreaded fold and tell them that the web has moved on. Content display has moved on. Scroll wheels rule the world!