To Infinity and Beyond

Say hello to the future of reading on the web. We’re happy to introduce a new feature for WordPress.com home pages: infinite scrolling.

Speed and performance are key on the modern web: new content loads in quickly without a full page reload. Instead of the old way of navigating down a page by scrolling and then clicking a link to get to the next page, waiting for a page refresh — the document model of the web — infinite scrolling pulls the next set of posts automatically into view when the reader approaches the bottom of the page, more like an application.

See this in action on Matt on Not-WordPress—Matt’s moblog. When you get to the bottom of the page, you’ll see a loading icon display briefly as the next posts load below.

Back? Now that you are drooling along with the rest of us at the wondrous food photos he posts there daily, you’ve experienced the power of reading without clicking “next”—it means reading through many posts without friction. Imagine your visitors doing the same with your content. Pretty cool, eh?

We’ve taken care of the details like integrating with your theme design as seamlessly as possible and supporting sites with footer widgets. We’ve also refined the basic footer appearance; as you scroll down a subtle footer pops up containing your blog title, which readers can click to scroll back up.

Many of you have already seen this in action on your site. To those of you who’ve sent in feedback, thank you—we’ve incorporated your suggestions to improve the experience. The metrics from infinite scrolling are conclusive: people are reading more posts and spending more time on your sites. As you might guess, people are more likely to just scroll down than they were to click the old style links—the new way is faster and better.

If you prefer the old-school way, and disable the feature in Settings → Reading, you’ll instead see a “Load more posts” button at the bottom of the page, which loads the next available content quickly after the button is clicked—avoiding a full, slow page reload.

We’ve also automatically enabled the click-to-load button for blogs where there might be important information in footer widgets, so your visitors always have access to the entirety of your content. The number of posts loaded with the button can be changed in your “Blog pages show at most” reading setting. Learn more about the settings.

Infinite scrolling is already enabled for over 30 themes to date, and in the coming weeks we’ll be rolling it out to the rest of our themes.

Now to investigate how to make ourselves a neverending breakfastthat would be amazing, too.


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Lance Willett

116 Comments

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  1. Moco Scribe

    All that food is making me hungry. It’s a good idea, but don’t some themes already do this, or am I missing something? :P

    Like

  2. Moco Scribe

    I also think I left to right scroll would also work well and is long overdue….

    Like

  3. Rob Skinner

    I really like this – and by coincidence spotted it in action earlier when scrolling down to find one of my own posts on Ertblog!

    Like

  4. Mikalee Byerman

    Quick question: do the blog stats reflect accurate page views if infinite scrolling is enabled? Or does it only count as one “view”?

    Like

    • Lance Willett

      Good question Mikalee. Each time a reader loads more posts (whether it’s automatic with a scroll or by clicking the load-more button) it counts as a new pageview in your stats.

      In general you should see an increase in pageviews as readers spend more time reading and hopefully keep reading through to your other content.

      Like

  5. Vaneeesa Blaylock

    I noticed this a couple of weeks ago, but it was looping some of the same posts over, which I posted a forum question on. Others chimed in with the same issue, but I don’t think Automattic ever replied to the problem. I’m guess/hoping that this official statement means you fixed that problem, even if you never replied on it.

    Like

  6. adrianamills

    Great improvement! I will try now. Thanks.

    Like

  7. mikecane

    I don’t like it. I’ve turned if off. Further, I want my old blog behavior back, where it loads a discrete page, not add stuff to the bottom. Make it so.

    Like

    • Sheri

      Sorry to hear that! With Infinite Scroll turned off, nothing has been added to the bottom but the look of the link to view older posts has changed. You can switch to a static front page any time and you won’t see it (on the home page at least).

      Like

  8. adrianamills

    Retracting my last comment as option is not available for me! :(

    Like

  9. Sensuous Inkspiller

    I live in a state where broadband access is (still) not widespread, which means… dial up. Infinite scroll is a nightmare for dial up connections.

    The constant loading and flashing, on broadband, gives me a headache. I’d much rather click to a next page, than to scroll forever, and not know if I’ll ever get to the end. I have stopped watching several blogs because of it.

    In other words, I’m not a fan, and wish this were an OPTION for bloggers to choose for their blog, rather than a mandate.

    Like

    • Sheri

      Infinite scrolling is designed to speed up reading, even for dial-up. And, it’s already an option. :) I think most people will opt to keep it though. Check out the related support page.

      Like

  10. Diane Vacca

    I have the Pilcrow theme, but I haven’t noticed any difference at all. Sounds like a good idea, though.

    Like

  11. Musicofourheart

    What I continue to appreciate, enjoy and revel in is the constant innovation the WordPress team brings to the user experience. Infinite scrolling is très chic and its time is now! Love what you continue to do to make blogging and Web use fun!!

    Like

  12. cabinet stew

    It doesn’t seem to be active with my blog yet…I am using Theme: Customized Quintus by Automattic.
    but I LOVE this and hope it will become an option or me soon!! thanks

    Like

  13. Biggie Beil

    Thanks sir, I really like this.

    Like

  14. Cal

    This sounds great – I hope y’all add this feature soon to the CONTEMPT theme, as it doesn’t seem to be working with blogs using that template yet. :- (

    Like

  15. Jana Bouc

    Will it be coming to Portfolio? I’m planning to purchase that theme soon.

    Like

    • Sheri

      Yep, we’re planning to convert as many themes as make sense and Portfolio looks like a good candidate to me.

      Like

  16. flurrious

    You keep saying that infinite scrolling is an option, but it’s not an option. There’s an option for more posts to load automatically at the bottom of the same page, and there’s an option to load more posts manually at the bottom of the same page, but there’s not option to turn infinite scrolling OFF and return to discrete page views, which is what some people are saying they want.

    Nor do I see how this will increase pageviews. When people who are new to a blog want to read back through all the old posts, they generally read down the homepage, click the “older posts” link and then read back through Page 2, Page 3, etc. Since it normally takes several days to do this, they need to have a way to know where they left off. With everything on one page, they’re not going to have any way to mark where they stopped, and they’re going to have to scroll through everything again to try to find it. I suspect that at that point most people won’t bother. This means fewer page views, not more.

    On a more general note, WP has implemented a lot of changes lately that are not reader-friendly or comment-friendly and has brushed off any feedback that’s not 100% positive. Not sure why that is, but clearly something has changed over the last year or so.

    Like

    • Sheri

      There are two options: infinite scrolling or click-to-load. We actually did listen to, respond to, and made changes based on a number of helpful users’ feedback. We reviewed stats and saw that readership is increasing. We also found that after giving the option to turn it off, very few people opted out. For all of these reasons and others, we decided to move forward and update. Feedback has absolutely not brushed off for not being 100% positive! I appreciate your comment, I understand change is not always easy, and I hope you’ll give infinite scrolling another chance. :)

      Like

  17. RJ Marmol

    Reblogged this on RJMarmol.com | iPhone Apps News and Reviews and commented:
    Been waiting for this. Thanks WordPress! :)

    Like

  18. advgrrls

    Reblogged this on Cheryl & Leslie's and commented:
    Interesting new feature for our BLOG

    Like

  19. screamingmango

    Reblogged this on No Way. and commented:
    Love it when things get better . . .

    Like

  20. aquadraco

    Hated it on Facebook’s “welcome” page; hated it when it was dumped, unrequested, on my blog. Infinite scroll is a damn nuisance. I’m on prepaid mobile, and all this feature does is drain my account by downloading pages I don’t want to see. It should never be a default setting. If you must have it, make it available as an option!

    Like

    • Sheri

      Sorry you feel that way! Consider giving it another chance. Some of the features I really didn’t like when they were new are the same ones I end up loving in the end. If you’re using infinite scrolling to read blog posts, that by itself won’t drain your mobile account. You’re right that popular sites, like Facebook, are adopting this as a feature.

      Like

  21. Percelionify

    Whoohoo, finally.

    Like

  22. Quick Asian Recipes - Ashish Negi

    I am not sure if this feature will be quite useful. Though ajaxifying page loads sounds wonderful, it isn’t quite different from new pages views especially when we are looking at image rich blogs. Many people might limited but I personally prefer the old school way. And the increase in views could be because people scroll to the bottom and then of course the page loads more posts whether or not they want it that way.

    Like

  23. paralaxvu

    For being all volunteers, you certainly do a long and difficult job rather well. I take back anything I’ve said about you on my blog. Until the next rant, of course;-)

    Like

    • Sheri

      We aren’t all volunteers, but there are tons and tons of completely amazing volunteers that build and support the core WordPress software.

      Like

  24. rizqifahma

    Nice :D. But I prefer click to load over infinite scrolling. Sometimes infinite scrolling doesn’t look good.

    Like

  25. generationgbooks

    Very cool! But now I’m hungry.

    Like

  26. tom

    Awesome, thanks! I’m looking forward to seeing Elegant Grunge in action :-).

    Like

  27. Lee

    I love you.

    Like

  28. Nader Nazemi

    Perfect!

    Like

  29. ismailimail

    Enterprise, please…soon!

    Also, flexible headers, for all themes.

    Thanks.

    Like

  30. njwv

    Any chance this will also be added when you view posts by category or other multi-post views on a blog?

    Like

  31. eof737

    TY WP darlings! :-)

    Like

  32. retroredz

    This is nice!

    Like

  33. Secret Gardener

    Just wondering whether old & discontinued themes (Quentin) have chance of acquiring the continuous scrolling.
    I cling to Q because there’s nothing else like it, yet so many that are similar to each other.

    Like

    • Sheri

      Quintus is the updated version of Quentin, and Quintus will be the one that gets new updates. Try taking a spin through the Appearance → Themes → Live Preview links for some of the other themes to see if you might like to switch. You might really like Adventure Journal, Bold Life, or Matala. Keep in mind that if you save after previewing, you won’t be able to change back to Quentin since that theme has been retired.

      Like

  34. nandolima

    Reblogged this on Meu blog.

    Like

  35. John Hayden

    Very interesting. I first noticed “infinite scrolling” a few weeks ago, and thought it was a software malfunction. Often, I like to scroll to the bottom of an attractive blog to see the name of the theme they’re using. I couldn’t get to the bottom. I also couldn’t get to the widgets at the bottom of some blogs.

    It appears that you’re addressing these issues, to wit: “We’ve also refined the basic footer appearance; as you scroll down a subtle footer pops up containing your blog title, which readers can click to scroll back up.” — I’m not sure I understand that sentence. I’ll have to look carefully and see figure out how it works.

    I’ve just changed my blog to the “Chunk” theme, which has no sidebar but has widgets at the bottom. I made the change because Chunk is a great-looking theme. One alternative would be to provide a sidebar option or a top-widget option for blogs like Chunk, but of course that might detract from the elegant design of the theme.

    No criticism here; I’m happy that you’re constantly trying to improve features and readability. I’ll keep watching and try to adapt to the changes.

    Like

    • Sheri

      You can still see the theme name in the footer. Check out the last image in this post to see an example. You can also see the theme name in the blog menu in the toolbar (left side) when you are logged in to WordPress.com. If the blog has footer widgets, infinite scrolling is automatically disabled, so footer widgets are never hidden. The sentence you mentioned means you can click the site name in the footer to get back to the top of an infinite scrolling page.

      Like

  36. Ebrael Shaddai

    Ready for Nuntius’ theme??

    Like

  37. Escuela Universitaria de Turismo de Asturias

    Thanks for the improvement!

    Like

  38. Ben Knotts

    Wow. Infinite words with so many different meanings. lol.

    Like

  39. lonnalisawilliams

    Cool! Thanks so much. Keep up the good work.

    Like

  40. zehry

    So yummy! Om nom nom! :)

    Like

  41. Amy

    Great feature! Thank you so much for making the continuous improvement!

    Like

  42. gitikapartington

    Love you WordPress! x

    Like

  43. ceejayblue

    I’m finding these emails really interesting as I’m just in the process of setting up my blog. I just wanted to give a word of warning though. My OH has been sent a bill for £1300 from Getty Images for using one of their images on his website. He got it from what he thought was a commission free site about 6 years ago and so has no proof now of where he got it! However, Getty have spybots who can spot an image from their library even if you have changed it, apparently the spybot can identify it down to single figure pixels! He removed the image immediately he got the letter but they are still chasing him. Even our MP was unable to help!

    I know a lot of people who have blogs use photos that to me look like they are copyrighted and I just worry that one day they too will get a letter through the post with a large bill that eventually they will have to pay! We are currently in dispute with Getty because of the bill but apparently this is a worldwide issue and they send out tens of thousands of bills every day to unsuspecting bloggers and website owners.

    Like

  44. Carlinhos

    Thanks for the “old-school way” option for any theme :)

    Like

  45. honknyc

    I just saw it in action on my own blog and I like it a great deal.

    Like

  46. chris

    I have footer widgets set up for pages with no-sidebar, so I am happy that infinite scrolling will still work with the footer visible.
    I’m using Enterprise and Modularity Lite. I hope they are available with infinite scroll soon.

    Like

  47. nutsfortreasure

    Reblogged this on Living and Lovin .

    Like

  48. Paul T. Shafer

    Buzz, you’ve got wings! You glow in the dark! You talk! Your helmet does that, that… *whoosh* thing! You are a cool toy!

    Like

  49. simonrphotography

    Great improvment, loving the updates.

    Like

  50. Farah Ng @ Broken Penguins

    I love the convenience of infinite scrolling – except when I’m trying to get to something on the footer. Then it becomes a huge pain.

    Like

  51. TheMeth90

    I really hate the infinite scrolling, thanks for the “old school way”.

    Like

  52. postpunkmonk

    I find that infinite scrolling loses the granularity of the writing and presents the reader with a potential tidal wave of content that may be off putting. And yes, reaching links in the footer like “view full site” when on a mobile platform where you want to browse the full site becomes far too challenging. Perhaps if there were some visible proxy that depicted the amount of data to scroll through and offered instead a fall back to the old nav method at the reader’s choice, I’d be somewhat happier with the change.

    Like

  53. artzent

    Awesome new tools! Thank you.

    Like

  54. dazzlerplus

    A major improvement — thank you!

    Like

  55. susielindau

    I LOVE this feature! Anything to keep it rolling is just plain fantastical. Thanks WordPress!

    Like

  56. mfarhanansari

    I hate “next”, it’s a good feature.

    Like

  57. Sam Hunter

    Expected infinity scrolling – reached bottom of page. Disappointing!

    Like

  58. JC

    I do not like the feature, the reader gets an overkill of choices, browses even more quickly over the blog’s content, and as a control freak: I loose grip of my visitors behavior, most read post etc……

    Like

    • Sheri

      I’m not sure trying to have complete control over visitors’ behavior is a good goal, and if you think you had it before that may have been a misconception.

      Like

  59. JC

    Could it be made optional? ;-)

    Like

  60. snake0644

    Very good idea. Bravo.

    Like

  61. cheesecake

    This is great! But unfortunately I can’t test it for the mean time because it is not yet on my theme. I will definitely wait for this.

    Like

  62. Michel

    I like the infinite scroll when I’m going through the Reader, but I’m not sure if I like it on the blog itself.

    Like

  63. sabahsongs

    This is great. I use Oxygen theme, and once I’d moved footers to the sidebars the infinite scrolling kicked in. Readers are definitely checking out more posts. TQ for this.

    Like

  64. A. Maryam

    Really amazing, the idea is fully new in my view, thank you.

    Like

  65. Andy Skelton

    Hooray Lance! Hooray infinity!

    Like

  66. Recis

    Hi,

    I’m sorry but this feature just doesn’t work for me and, I believe, my readers. I have a blog that is set to “one post” on the “Blog pages show at most” setting. This is so my readers’ attentions are focused on a single, up-to-date post. It really is distracting to our aesthetic design as bloggers and to the format that we want to present to our readers. Also, an overwhelming amount of blog posts on a single page prompts readers to just keep on scrolling, looking at images instead of reading the content.

    I do hope that there will be an option in the future to disable it and revert to the standard “page view” of viewing blog posts. Even with the “Load more posts” button, it can really be frustrating when a web browser’s slider has gotten so small from loading hundreds of blog posts on a single page. Blog organization becomes a nightmare.

    Cheers!

    Like

  67. Chips Off the Old Block

    I was thankful to stumble on this post. I had noticed my MistyLook theme doing the infinite scrolling thing quite a while ago and thought it was a glitch; I could not figure out how to stop it, so I switched to Adventure Journal. Personally I think infinite scrolling can be overwhelming for a reader, but I will try to keep an open mind about this.

    Like

  68. bloodsong

    Hey hey; so glad you left in OPTIONS for the blogger! Something some newer features are lacking. ::cough:: Not that this isn’t cool, but I’m thinking of the story I’m publishing on my blog… all the chapters would be backwards. And intermixed with the other posts, too. But it shouldn’t bother my regular-blog blog. ;)

    Like

  69. patco

    Great updates. Thank you for sharing them. :)

    Like

  70. Val

    Please tell me that anything I put in my footers won’t be completely destroyed when my perfectly good theme goes the way of all the others.

    Like

    • Lance Willett

      Hi Val—as I mention in the announcement we automatically handle footer widgets with the click-to-load button. Keeps your footer content visible to everyone.

      Like

  71. onomebuzz

    Reblogged this on OnomeBuzz.

    Like

  72. noonebutabloghead

    My blog doesn’t seem to have the option for infinite scrolling – is it only certain themes that allow this?

    Like

  73. Stan Guymollet

    This is a marvelous and innovative feature. It is well thought out! Bravo and Kudos!

    Like

  74. Sarah

    This is an infelicitous development w/r/t the overall appearance of my blog. I manipulate my sidebars, number of posts displayed and the ‘more’ tag to create an aesthetically pleasing whole. The loading of additional posts creates an ugly and isolated central strip of content which lacks context.

    Like

    • Sheri

      I think your blog looks great, and I think your readers will feel the same way when they use the “Load more posts” button on your blog.

      Like

  75. i9CRIE

    Love you WordPress!

    Like

  76. the secret keeper

    Reblogged this on the secret keeper and commented:
    this is going to make scrolling blog posts a thing of the super charged future. sounds great to me. would like to see in action on my own blog and all blogs enacted: “To Infinity and Beyond.” jen

    Like

  77. El Salón de mi casa

    And so WordPress keeps trying to mimic Tumblr. I hope they change their mind, if I wanted Tumblr I’d already be there. I thought WordPress intended to be a more professional blogging platform, not some scrolling madness trying to crunch more numbers for “views”.

    Like

    • Sheri

      I like Matt’s take on this—”it’s like peanut butter and chocolate.” :) WordPress.com will continue to become more simple and streamlined, and that is “a process driven by our design vision and our community, not what any particular competitor is doing.”

      Like

  78. justsooz

    Hi Lance, I can see the benefits of infinite scroll and had in fact selected Twenty Eleven because infinite scroll was one of its options. What would be helpful is the option to have floating sidebars so that readers don’t need to scroll back to the up to continue to navigate. That’s my feedback…. Thanks!

    Like

  79. Johann Thorsson

    I just saw this on my own blog, and really liked it. Great work, WordPress team!

    Like

  80. El Salón de mi casa

    But I like my chocolate without peanut butter! :(

    Like

  81. Eduardo [dutecnic]

    Would like to at least have the option to neither use Infinite Scrolling nor Load More Posts. WordPress is not Facebook… “Load More” option on Chaotic Soul theme looks more an error than a feature…
    :-(

    Like

  82. iseltaylor

    As I explore different blogs in anticipation of creating my own, I’m amazed of all the technical possibilities.

    Like

  83. galaxicindianashok

    Nothing wrong I guess, as long as comments, blog access options are left to users and subject-wise categorized for convenience of all! If there is an Infinite Extension of an Endless Duration of Time Infinite possibilities to access blogs, this is the way we enter our future! Love this!

    Like

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