The Difference Between Infinite And Parallax Scrolling Explained

Although infinite and parallax scrolling are both web design scrolling techniques, they have distinct differences and solve different problems. Below we explain the main differences between the two.

Infinite scrolling is a web design feature that allows the user to scroll through large amounts of content quickly. In its most basic form, as a user scrolls down through content, more content, if available, is loaded from below automatically. In this way, infinite scrolling removes the need to click to a new web page to view more content. The user scrolls until a relevant piece of content is found or the end of all available content is reached.

Infinite scrolling found its beginning with social media websites, where copious amounts of real time content were being created by the minute. Within this medium, the relevancy of any one content item took a backseat to the browsability of all content. Infinite scrolling has also found a home on mobile devices, where limited screen widths force more content to be arranged vertically instead of horizontally.

While infinite scrolling may sound like a nifty way to reduce clicking while browsing content, it is important to keep in mind that the more content served to a user at one time, the less relevant content becomes overall. In this regard, infinite scrolling makes the most sense in contexts where browsing through content takes precedence over delivering specific content items to the user.

While infinite scrolling serves the needs of users browsing large amounts of content displayed in a seemingly random order (from the user’s perspective), parallax scrolling serves a different purpose. Parallax scrolling is a highly structured, prearranged content experience. As the user scrolls up and down a web page, content on a background moves independently from and at a different speed than content on a separate foreground layer. Parallax creates an illusion of depth and immersion into the content through which the user is scrolling.

Parallax scrolling works well with finite amounts of content that can be structured into a simple yet persuasive story. Parallax also works well with a variety of content, such as images, text, graphics, and animations. On the downside, a parallax scrolling solution is not a flexible medium for disseminating content. Once a parallax solution is created it is difficult to modify or change. In addition, parallax has little search SEO value and user behavior is difficult to track via website analytics software

If you are interested in exploring a paralax or infinite scrolling solution for your  website, contact Avatar New York today.


Avatar New York is an innovating, award-winning web design New York firm dedicated to providing clients with responsive websites that help grow brands and convert visitors to customers. With an expertise in web development, branding, cloud hosting, mobile app development, and CMS and e-commerce solutions.