As long ago as 2002, the BBC news declared that internet browsing has reduced our attention span to approximately nine seconds, which in the animal kingdom is tantamount to that of a goldfish.

After thinking about that for a second or two (pun intended); I envisioned how long a goldfish swims before changing direction. It makes sense. They have an attention cycle, they swim a path and then they shift direction. Probably about 9 seconds on the average.

Have I lost you? Or are you still interested?

One fact is simple; internet access has expanded the number of choices for information exponentially. It stands to reason that with more choices the reader is likely to feel freer or even under more pressure to review more information in order to “educate” themselves about a given topic.

Are you still with me?

Ted Selker an MIT expert on online reader behavior (yes, THE MIT) stated that the way we do things affects our attention span. Thus, it’s reasonable to conclude that the light speed access to a seemingly unlimited supply of choices with a limited amount of time in which to review those choices means less time spent reviewing each choice.

Don’t click that link . . . .

Studies show that even the most engaging websites keep the reader’s attention for approximately 60 seconds. Those sites are considered “sticky”. They’re “sticky” because they keep the reader from moving on to your competitor’s site; which is just a click away.

So there’s the challenge at hand; becoming and staying “sticky”. It means delivering compelling content, from the dazzling, glamorous world of procurement in a pure and concise fashion, that will keep the reader’s attention for as long as an entire minute.

That being said, you’re thinking about the next site you’ll be visiting, now.

Hold on a second . . .

If you’re still reading this, and odds are you aren’t. There’s more to come in our next post.

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