Wednesday, August 7, 2013

When UX Takes a Back Seat to Pageviews

Digitoday reporting:
The pressures of the current publishing world are making publishers compromise the standard user experience. A talented designer or user-experience expert would be aghast as some practices employed by marquee brands.
We see it in the form of video autoplays, welcome ads, in-article links or the ubiquitous slideshow. A user experience expert sees such tactics as antithetical to providing people with an enjoyable visit. And yet they’ve become common practice as publishers have grown beholden to the pageview economy, where low ad prices mean the pressure is on to generate more an more clicks. The pressure to squeeze as much revenue out of a single page’s real estate has simply made it too easy to toss some of the most basic user-experience tenets by the wayside.
“When you’re getting pressure from all around and see white space, the urge is to fill with more options but is antithetical to what the user wants,” said Dan Maccarone, co-founder of Charming Robot, a design agency whose current clients include ABC News, Mental Floss and Backstage.
A few of the more offensive tactics:
Video autoplay Nobody likes a video that launches automatically. And yet, from the Washington Post to ABC News, they’re everywhere. “Video is sexy for advertisers, but not for users,”
Slideshows Every single article on the Huffington Post has one.  ...“If they can convert that one person to going a slideshow of 20 photos, they can count that traffic as 21 pageviews,”...
Links between paragraphs... 

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