If I haven't done this before (my memory is asleep and I'm too lazy to check old posts), here are some of things websites do that will have me clicking the the close button in a hurry. I'm not naming names (mostly). You know exactly who you are...
- You blast sound at me as soon as the page loads. Sound from your embedded music player, sound from an ad or, worse yet, sound from something that sounds like porn (and you aren't even a porn site). Notice the YouTube vids on this blog's sidebar. I leave it up to the viewer to decide whether or not they want to share my "Song of the Day" or not. No pressure.
- And if you do force your tattle-tale audio on me, I have to go scrolling all over the place to find it so I can shut that sh*t down. (Well, I use to look for the Mute button. Now I just close out of the site. It's less disturbing to my nerves.) I mean, come on. Forget being at work or some other place where you shouldn't be checking out the sleaze that is mediatakeoutdotcom anyway. What about when you are just sitting up home late at night with a sleeping child, cranky roommate or jumpy pet in the vicinity? I clicked on a shopping site one night and the blast of an ad nearly made my cat climb up the side of my face. STAHP! Just. Stop.
- Your page barely finishes loading up before it's flashing your damn plea for me to "Like" you on Facebook. First, we all know how I (and many other people) detest any and all things FB. Second of all, why would anyone "Like" your page until they have a chance to even see it? If it's not Facebook pimping, it's a beg for me to subscribe - to a newsletter, email list, or whatever. That right there is a turn-off. It really just makes me NOT like you, or want to subscribe to your page, or ever click on another link to your site. EVER. I went to a site once after hearing about their fashion items. It took me two seconds to leave because there was no way to see anything on the site without first joining up. That's so stupid. How about you let me see what you're offering members before asking me to join? That's like letting me meet one person in your clubhouse and making me sign a blood oath to love all the members before I get in the door. Nah. You can miss me with it.
- The sites that post great articles or interesting information need to stop spoon-feeding it out. If I have to click "Next Page" every two paragraphs, I will get annoyed enough to leave. This is really a pain in the butt on those sites with the audio or "Like" begs that come up on every single page that load. At least Cracked Magazine has the option to "view entire article." That's cool because I have a theory that other sites only make you click over so that they can load your brain with more advertising. I'm just saying,
- If I do get onto your site - with some initial peace and quiet, no membership required - you ruin the game with another peeve: anything that starts madly flashing at me. Reminds me too much of porn sites when I've, um, accidentally landed on them... Obviously, you had my attention when I came over to view your site, right? All that damn flashing is just going to make my brain go into flee mode and get the hell out of there as fast as I can. Imagine a married man, trying to slink into a titty bar and being greeted with a flashing spotlight -outside the entrance? I don't even want everyone in town to know that I'm walking into Nordstrom.
- I hate the shopping sites that claim to let a user "sort" items by price, when their sorting doesn't actually work. I was looking at fragrances on a favorite site and sorted some items by "prices low to high." I had two things in my Checkout Cart before I noticed similar items at even lower prices. Just to make sure I wasn't screwing up, I went back and re-sorted. Guess what? On this particular site, $37.99 for Oil de Vanille is less expensive than $7.85 for Oil de Vanille. And I thought I was bad with numbers.
- If you are selling products, try to have: a) a decent image of the product, or b) an image of the actual product - not just one "representative" of the product, or c) an image at all. I hate trying to use my browser's Zoom to view something that you want to charge $20, $30 or even $100 for when the image looks like it was taken from space. And I have returned items that looked legit on your site, yet, when delivered, looked like it came from the Dollar Store's clearance bin.
Am I the only one with these peeves? I can't be. We live in a world where a lot of us do everything via website: learn, shop, amuse ourselves, socialize... You'd think any site out there would do all they could to keep viewers coming back.