When you go to a specific website, chances are you went for a particular reason – be it to read the article you just followed the link for, to do some research, or perhaps to purchase something. What you did not visit the website for was to have a pop-up ad stretch across your screen. This is annoying enough when it occurs on a laptop, but even more so when it happens on a mobile device.
Thankfully, we will soon be able to put many of these annoyances to rest and thus have a more pleasurable mobile Web experience.
According to a report issued by Google last week, a call out is being made to websites that use pop-up ads and interstitials (web pages displayed before or after an expected content page, often to display advertisements or confirm the user’s age – prior to showing age-restricted material). This change will go into effect on January 10, 2017, so you have plenty of time to make changes. Google’s goal is to make the Web more friendly for its users by providing better search results. Consequently, having a pop-up could ultimately result in a site ranking lower in search results.
That said, what about elements such as banner ads or perhaps truly informative pop-ups that are used? According to the report, Google does plan to make allowances for pop-ups that manage legal obligations, login dialog boxes, and banners that “use a reasonable amount of space but are easily dismissible.”
Also of note, is that not all interstitials will be penalized. Thus far, Google has identified three types of interstitials that will be considered intrusive:
- Pop-ups that cover the main content after the user arrives at the page as a result of Web search
- Stand-alone pop-ups that must be dismissed before accessing content
- The use of a layout where the pop-up mimics the above the fold content but the original content has been in lined underneath the fold.
Or, to put it more succinctly, Google is targeting the overlays that gray out the content beneath them, thus preventing you from being able to read a website, or those that require you to carefully tap a small in order to dismiss them.
However, they have not yet said what size the pop-ups or banner should be in order to make the cut. But, they have given companies a heads up regarding what types of pop-ups could be at risk. These include newsletter sign up forms, coupons, membership offers, promotions and assorted web advertising elements that are often used on WordPress sites.
This is a change that the team at Mobile Associates is pleased to learn about. We understand the need to get your message out on the Web, and want to help you do so in a way that encourages people to visit your site. We do this through the use of offerings such as social media management, various web campaigns, blog posts and app creation. If you would like to improve your site guests’ experience on your website, give us a call to learn how we can help.