Search This Blog

Thursday, February 10, 2011

How To Keep Them Coming Back...

I'm a blogger. I think we've covered that extensively and you're pretty well versed on the subject by now, so I can cease with the introductions. I'm an article picker. What does that mean? That means I spend at least an hour a day trolling the "interwebs" perusing stories, articles, pictures...and the like. It's reasonable entertainment and usually nets me juicy tidbits on trends in marketing, finance, technology and the latest antics of whatever butt implanted pop star is currently doing something "butt-implantish". With that said and an adequate amount of frustration mounting, I thought I'd attack point out some of the most annoying things done in the name of supposed web savvy that keep me from ever visiting your site AGAIN!

1. Misleading tags.
Tags identify the information we, your faithful readers, are searching for. The goal of a tag is to let me know I'm in the right place to find whatever subject I came flying down the information superhighway for in the first place. If your tags are misspelled, unrelated or a part of some inside joke, I'm sure to miss the reference and feel slightly duped. Think of your site this way: How often would you visit your local drugstore for their DVD collection?
Aspirin? Yes.
Prescriptions? Of course!
But DVD's? Not so much!

2. Widget parade.
There's only so much information my itty bitty brain decides to process and comprehend. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. So, if your page is inundated (and yes, I mean INUNDATED) with clocks, temperature, spinning fairies and a veritable animal farm of widgetry, I'm looking for the "X" in the corner like a woman seeking a life raft in Lake Superior .  Not only are the widgets a bit of sensory overkill (which we'll discuss a bit more, later), it slows the loading of the page. If I can brew a cup of coffee, engage in a small battle of wits on Twitter and check email all before your page loads...guess what? It DOESN'T! Buh~bye!

3. Preachy, plain rarely updated content.
Barrel of laughs, ain't she?
Yeah, I know I just said to tone things down a bit, but leaving me with a largely blank page and simple text, is a creativity red flag! It makes me think your site is boring, your ability to cut and past is nonexistent or that you've failed to pay a web designer. All of the prior does little to endear me to your what brought me in the first place: your content. Likewise, unless accompanied by a finger wagging graphic, your reader should rarely feel scolded or judged. This is especially true in the blogosphere. Except mine...because you KNOW I'm right. Of course I am...don't be ridiculous! (See what I did there?).

4. It hurts my EYES/EARS!!!
I get it that your inner Barbie Dream House school of webdesign begs for hot pink excessively curlicue text on a neon lime green background, but some of us are concerned with the ongoing developement of our eyesight. And while your favorite song may involve some variation of random lyrics about illicit body parts, violence and escaping the police hear it blasting from your desktop as you hurriedly close the window before your boss hears it, is a violation of common sense, if not decency. Seriously, with as much time as most of us spend online (or gazing at handheld devices) it should be pretty obvious that the experience is supposed to be a comfortable one that doesn't jeopardize our ability to maintain gainful employment. Tone down the neon flashing colors, don't saddle your site with revenue driving pop ups and make the volume button one touch and easily identifiable so that I'll return.

Visiting your site should be similar to a visit to your home. As I sit on your couch is it necessary for me to move loud garish pillows about? Am I busy emptying your wastebaskets and tidying your magazines? Am I placed in a corner with a dunce cap and gruel? Or is it warm, welcoming and inviting enough for me to make myself comfortable. The idea is to inspire the desire to bookmark YOU for a return visit.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Questions, comments, concerns, contributions?