Nov 30, 2022 | Design, Web

We have all seen them, an obnoxious box comes from nowhere, gets in the way of the website we were looking at and demands our attention. Worse yet, they often won’t let you close them unless you click the right button, and then, they have the audacity to COME BACK! Again and again. The invention of the popup created both opportunities for marketing and malicious software alike. It got to the point where now all internet browsers come with a popup blocker as a standard feature. In this post we will explore ways to use popups that will not put off your users and be a positive force for marketing.

Peak up popups

We run into these on most of the websites we visit today, they are usually hugging the bottom of your screen with an arrow you can click on to minimize or close them. They are used for site notices, special instructions, or other important information users need to navigate your website. These popups are probably the least offensive method of using a popup in existence. They are viewed as a guide or helpful popup.

Multiple popups

This is a huge no no. Never, and I mean never use more than one popup on a page at a time. It create a world of frustration for users. Not only do they need to deal with closing multiple windows, the popups can conflict with each other and cause mistaken clicks leading users to pages they didn’t want to navigate too. This is a very poor user experience.

Center screen darkened background

Probably the most popular way to display a marketing popup. These can run the gamut from being informative to invasive. The keys to staying towards the informative end are frequency and time delay. A short delay can be helpful as not to get in the user’s face right away. You also want to make sure the popup doesn’t load on all the pages of your website every time. Just pick a few pages that trigger the popup, and then be sure to have the popup use cookies so if the user closes the popup, it won’t come back for a while.

Design is important

Keep it short, popups should be treated like billboards. You only have a few seconds to get your message across to users. So keeping text concise and images interesting is very important.

Popups with interaction

This can be helpful, but only it is not a forced interaction. Often it makes sense to simply make the whole popup a button rather than put a button on it. Or have the popup lead to a form rather than put a form on it. But there are instances where these could be used effectively.

When to use popups?

Popups are great for immediate messaging that needs to be brought to users. So things like sales, discount codes, new features, or an event are good times to use a popup. Just remember to use them sparingly and tastefully.

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