Toolbars on the Bottom of the Page

Adding a toolbar pinned to the bottom of the view port is becoming more common for websites. The idea is to add a bit of functionality, making common links easily accessible at any time. The problem is that it can often give the site a false footer, as is the case with CNET.

CNET Toolbar gives website a false bottom.

As you can see with the image above, scrolling to this point of the article can give the reader the impression that this is the end of the article (as it did with me). But, viewing the image below will show you that there is a large amount of content below this point.

The rest of the page after the false bottom.

Because of the design of the rest of the site, mainly the appearance of the header, a reader can mistakenly assume that an article has ended, when they have yet to read the bulk of the content. When adding functionality such as a toolbar like this, make sure you aren’t decreasing the usability of the site in the process.