Monday, February 19, 2007

Web Ad Attack

This morning I clicked on a link to a story in Forbes about the best and worst selling cars of 2007. I was first met with a splash ad for Symantec which could not be skipped. I waited for it to finish and went on to the story where I was immediately met with a loud video for an investment advice book from Fischer Investments along with the requisite banner ads. In addition there was one of those annoying pop-ups for a Forbes survey that moved with me as I scrolled down the page.

This is a lousy user experience. I understand that needs to make money, but this is overboard. I didn't even read the story because I was so annoyed and I'll likely think twice about the next link I see to Forbes. Here's what I think:
  1. If you force people through a splash ad, let them skip it. Most of the time they won't find the "Skip Ad" link until they've seen most of the ad, so you don't lose much eye time. But at least give the option.
  2. No self-starting video ads. Present the ad, with the embedded video and let me click on it if I'm interested.
  3. Pop-up ads are bad enough, but one that follows you around like a hungry little yelping puppy is just amateurish. Just don't do pop-up ads.

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