You probably have your own list of things you hate to see on the Internet, but here are five of the most commonly complained about page factors. These are things that exist online, but that really should not.
Most of them are completely illogical, and all of them will increase the bounce rate of a website.
They also have a negative effect on the amount of people who return to the website (i.e. if you website has any of these five elements then people will not return to your site).
1 – Popups at the start of a web page and affiliate advertisements
These two are lumped together because they are both as bad as each other. Popups at the start of a web page are annoying.
They may seem harmless, but after half an hour of surfing it feels like you have clicked off of them a thousand times. The only thing worse than the ones that popup at the start of a web page, are the ones that pop up when you try to leave a web page.
They are annoying and they will stop people from ever visiting that page. Moreover, nobody in the history of humanity has ever seen one of those popups saying “are you sure you want to leave” and clicked to stay.
It is fooling and pointless and should not be allowed.
Allied to this sort of behavior is affiliate marketing. It is probably a necessary evil for some websites, but it is so annoying when you are looking for something on a page, and you are accosted by a dumb affiliate advertisement.
There are millions of them for buying a bride, where some poor woman is hosted on the advert because she was forced into the slave trade.
Worse still are the ones that are only every clicked by congenital idiots, such as the ones promising to make you rich, slimmer, well hung, look younger, whiten your teeth, etc.
2 – Gallery articles and lists
These are the ones where you will have a top list of something, and they give you a run down, but you have to click a link to see the next one.
These exist so that webmasters can show you more affiliate ads. Some webmasters will even put an advertisement in the gallery itself so that you are forced to look at it.
These may have been novel when broadband Internet was first installed and you could look at them without waiting ten minutes between each entry, but these days they are a drain on time that most people do not have.
3 – The web pages that do not let you see them unless you “like” them on Facebook first
These are surprising dumb, and are becoming more and more popular because somebody out there keep clicking the “like” buttons to see the articles underneath.
They work by giving you the title of an article, but not letting you see the rest until you click “like” for the article, which is actually linked to a fan page on Facebook.
Ironically, even though these techniques work in getting people to click “like” on Facebook, the effect is only temporary. What the webmaster is doing is known as social media mention/marker manipulation.
Facebook will not punish you for doing this, but Google (bless them) will eventually start ignoring the markers/mentions from the Fan page, which then removes any SEO or influential power that the Fan page may have had.
At some point Google will probably release an update that calls this sort of thing “Black Hat SEO” so that websites cannot do it any more (you read it here first).
4 – Pages that have auto-start videos on them
Curses to the people who invented these. There is nothing wrong with putting videos onto a website, but it should only ever start if a person clicks on it.
The ones that auto-start are the worst thing on the Internet. There are a number of reasons for this, so here are a few.
They use up the credit of people on pay-as-you-go Internet, they mean the user has to leave the page (because everybody does), they are loud and wake up the kids in the house, they are noisy and unnecessary.
5 – Pages that redirect to an inescapable advert first
These are nearly as bad as auto start videos. Instead of going to the website at the end of the link you clicked, you are redirected to a page with a full-page ad on it.
Sometimes the advertisement is a picture, and sometimes it is just an animation or static ad. There is often a counter in the top right-hand corner that shows how long you have to wait before you get to your website.
These are annoying because most people have to bounce from the page and go back to the search engine in order to find the answers and pages they were looking for.