Read multi-page web articles on ONE page

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You have probably noticed a trend among a lot of websites.  When they publish a long story, they don’t put it all on one page.  Instead, the story is split up into smaller pieces and each of those little sections gets its own page.  So you read a few paragraphs, then click to page 2 and read a few more paragraphs, and so on.



Why would a website do this?  Years ago, there was a valid reason.  Back in the days of dialup connections, a web page with a lot of text could take quite a while to load.  If there were pictures on the page, it would take even longer.  Some visitors, rather than wait for the page to load, would just leave without reading the article.  By splitting the article into smaller sections, the page would load more quickly and people would stay and read the article.

These days, with almost everyone on a high speed connection, that issue is no longer a problem.  So why do we keep seeing articles split up?  Because of page views and advertising.

A website that sells advertising bases its pricing on how many unique page views it gets each month.  Obviously, a website with more page views can charge more for its ads.  If an article is all on one single page of the site, and a website visitor reads that article, that is counted as one page view.  However, if the article is split into 5 sections, meaning you have to look at 5 different pages to read the whole article, that counts as 5 page views.

The website can make more money that way, but you and I are stuck having to look at 5 different pages of advertising in order to read that one article.  Some of these can be really annoying.  Check out this one from Reader’s Digest – this one article is broken up into 20 sections, and each of them is only about 1 paragraph!  You have to click 20 times to read the whole thing!

Actually, you don’t… if you know the little One-Click Secret.

Almost every online article gives you an option to view a “printer-friendly” version of the text.  This means it takes the article, strips off the ads and other junk, and puts all the text in order on a single web page.  Of course, this is designed to make it easier for you to print it – but it also makes it a lot more convenient to read.

Just look for the little icon of a printer, or a text link that says “Printer-Friendly version.  When you click on that, you’ll see all the content in one easy to view space.  Go ahead and try it on that Reader’s Digest article I linked to above – you’ll see what I mean.


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