In the web world, it is pretty common for trends to come and go like the wind. What’s all the rage one day can be quickly found to be unfavourable and scorned upon the next. One such example is the infamous pop-up. A pop-up is defined as a separate window that appears on top of your browser. Most web design agencies would agree that it has a bad rep and is known to be intrusive, annoying and invasive to the user journey. In this article, we will look at why many websites still use pop-ups, the cons of pop-ups and better alternatives from a web design agency’s point of view.
How Pop-Ups Can Be Bad
Pop-Ups Are Not User-Friendly
Pop-ups appear unexpectedly while users are scrolling through the site, which breaks the user flow and takes away the user’s sense of control. This can in turn annoy and frustrate users, especially if the pop-ups are used in excess.
Pop-Ups Are Harmful To Your SEO
There are chances that your webpage will get penalised by Google for using intrusive pop-ups, especially on mobile. This will affect your Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) efforts and ultimately the visibility of your site.
Pop-Ups Are Not Good For Responsive
On smaller screens (such as mobile screens), pop-ups tend to take up almost the entire area, which obstructs the user flow even more and adds to a negative experience while browsing your site. On top of that, they can be difficult to close and frustrated users even more.
Why People Still Use Pop-Ups
Pop-ups are adopted on websites for a number of different use cases:
- Promotions (where users are enticed with benefits)
- Lead generation (such as newsletter subscriptions or to get a PDF in your email)
- Paywalls (to indicate premium content)
People may opt for pop-ups on websites because they want the high visibility it gets from visitors. Additionally, they are a quick and easy way to display new information and get your users’ attention. While it is true that there are certain pop-ups that can earn high conversion rates, more often than not, their design and the way they are implemented leaves a lot to be desired. As a web design agency, we feel that the potential downsides can be avoided by using other better alternatives.
A Web Design Agency’s Recommended Alternatives To Pop-Ups
There are other ways to get your users’ attention and lead them in the right direction without being intrusive and in their face.
This is good for mobile — well-placed and attractive calls-to-action (CTA) banners can help you get the visibility and conversions you seek without breaking the user flow.
These windows aren’t meant to be big but can still draw your users’ attention. Since they only take up a small portion of screen space, they won’t obstruct the user flow either.
These thin bars can be placed near the top of your page, and are especially useful for informing your users of sales and promotions.
More Accessible Forms
If lead generation is your goal, having more prominent and accessible forms may be a viable solution. With a well-thought-out user flow, you can place them where users will be likely to expect a form or make a decision. Including engaging and persuasive copy will help to add to the effectiveness of your form or CTA section.
It All Depends On Your Goals And Users
All in all, the decision lies in considering your end goals and users. Different solutions suit different goals and it is important to think about what your users need and their purpose of browsing your website. Remember that an effective, user-friendly website always tries to give users what they want instead of trying to shove them things they find irrelevant.