Have You Forgotten the User?

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I am frustrated. I’ve been forgotten.

Tonight I spent a little time on my iPhone doing research on a couple design topics. Convenience is the key. My computer was shut down and I was winding down for the night but like many, my iPhone is always at the ready when I get an idea and want to look into things. Perfect, right? Not so much.

Why?

Every site I went to loaded quickly which is great. They were all responsive so I could get reading quickly. Then, on every single one of the first 5 sites I visited, a full screen takeover occurred. Popup windows I was totally unable to close. The only way out was to sign up.

Here’s the problem:

I hadn’t even gotten through the first paragraph of the article before it happened and I had no way out. I didn’t know if I wanted to sign up because I had no idea if the article I was attempting to consume was going to provide me with any real value.

This is a huge problem for me. I saw no “close” indicator and in some cases, the popup was so enormous that it was larger than my iPhone screen. So I left.

My take on all 5 of those sites, there might have been a tremendous value but how would I know? I had a choice: either give my info to get past the annoying window that clearly didn’t consider the visitor, or leave never knowing what I was missing.

The tactic of using these types of popups tells me one thing:
I care more about getting your info than finding out if you really like what we have to offer.

How is this helpful to anyone?

It’s not. It’s ONLY helpful to the site owner who’s only objective is to get my info. My perception is that they care less about ME and more about my information.

There are so many ways to code a site properly so that you can engage with visitors AND collect their info on a mailing list in order to continue to engage. The problem is that these sites aren’t even thinking about this. Perhaps they think about it but at some point, no one bothered to test their site on a phone to see what the user experience would really be like.

They forgot about the user. The USER. The bread and butter behind all business success. If you can’t win over the user, what do you really have? Nothing.

I’n not talking about something unique and I am certainly not the only one who has experienced this. What confuses me is why so many websites are still employing this method of capturing data.

Caring more about your list quantity instead of the list quantity will ultimately catch up with you because let’s be honest: People do care when they can’t do what they want on their own device. When someone else takes over and interrupts your experience, the experience is shot.

Care more.

Think about your users. Test the platform. Test it again. Fix the glitches and test it again. Rinse and repeat as many times until you get it right. People know when you haven’t spent enough time caring.

What has your experience been?

Do these kind of popup windows annoy you? Do you give in and submit your info before knowing if you even want to surrender your information knowing you will probably get way more email than you bargained for? Are you stuck and don’t know how to get your own website more optimized for great user experience?

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