Google have announced via their Webmaster Central Blog that they are implementing a new policy where they will be ‘punishing’ mobile sites that have hard-to-dismiss popups.
We think this is a great idea!
Popups that are hard to dismiss, both on mobile sites and desktop sites, are extremely bad for user experience and really don’t achieve much. Users are more likely to leave the site than they are to fill in their details on that popup in order to access the site (the most common use of these popups is to capture user email addresses for marketing).
Google have given these as examples of the types of interstitials that they feel have a negative impact on user experience (UX).
An example of an intrusive popup
An example of an intrusive standalone interstitial
Another example of an intrusive standalone interstitial
The following have been provided as examples of interstitials that will not be penalised if used responsibly
An example of an interstitial for cookie usage
An example of an interstitial for age verification
An example of a banner that uses a reasonable amount of screen space
What should you do?
If you are not using any popups windows, then this won’t affect you at all. Good work; keep being awesome and providing a good UX to your visitors.
If you are using them, here are some options:
- Remove them from your pages/site.
- Decide what you were hoping to achieve by using them.
- Brainstorm some options for achieving better results without the use of popups. For example, if you’re looking to increase subscribers, then you may want to look at using lead magnets to build your database.