I’m always surprised at how many sites use questionable tactics with their websites that most certainly drive away readers. In some cases these decisions are certainly centered around monetizing a site, but in others, they are simply mind boggling. I’ve taken the past few months to really gather some feedback on how I’d like to evolve my blog in terms of making it more reader friendly and call to action oriented, but I can assure you that I would never consider any of the following tactics in any site I owned or consulted on.
- Make them click through multiple pages for lists. This always drives me nuts. I get the idea here. You usually catch this with bigger name sites and really all they are trying to do is drive up their web traffic numbers. Let’s be honest, it’s not a good user experience, so the only reason to make people click through a new page for every list item is for the site owner’s own benefit.
- Buy this, download this, or subscribe to this pop ups. Pop up ads were all the rave back in the early days of the net, and the ugly beast seems to have been reawaken in the form of blog owners trying to get new subscribers to their blogs. Again, an awful user experience, and there are better ways to accomplish this (see Hello Bar).
- Go ad crazy. I’m all for monetizing sites to continue to offer great free content, but not at the expense of monopolizing the screen real estate of a site. Ads should compliment your site’s content, not be the focus.
- Make it difficult to consume your site. Whether it be bad font choices, colors, poor navigation or a lack of search, the harder you make it for me to consume your site’s content, the more likely I’m out of there.