Is Your Website Annoying? Your website might be annoying customers. Here's how to change that.
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As web consumers become more sophisticated, they're demanding more and tolerating less from the websites they frequent. A national survey of consumer pet peeves about commercial websites commissioned by Chicago-based web hosting company Hostway found that more than 70 percent of consumers say they are unlikely to purchase from, or even return to, a site after encountering pop-up ads, "register for more information" log-on pages that block access to promised content, or extra software installation requirements for viewing the site. Other peeves: dead links, confusing navigation, slow-loading pages, ineffective site-search tools, moving text and poor appearance.
Andre Stecki, CEO and co-founder of GoApply.comin Aliso Viejo, California, has taken pains to make his website less annoying. GoApply.comis an online mortgage and financial services company that anticipates $35 million in revenue by the end of the year.
In the past, customers who wanted to apply for a loan had to fill out a lengthy, complicated application. "We did a lot of testing on what the sweet spot is in terms of number of fields, and we decided that 16 to 18 is the right number of questions," says Stecki, 35. Thanks to a shorter questionnaire, more consumers now complete their applications.