When it comes the environment, some industries get all the attention. Automakers, energy companies, and chemical manufacturers come to mind. But, we’ve been thinking about starting a new trend in our own line of work. We think it’s time the world opted for environmentally-friendly website design for a change.
Now, before you answer that websites themselves don’t actually create pollution, let us step back and remind you that there are millions and billions of sites out there squandering your most precious resources: time and attention.
What if we could make a set of rules that would stop them from doing that? And what would those rules look like? Just for fun, I’ve compiled a short list of new policies I think would make the digital world a better, cleaner place…
No More on-Page Pop Ups, Ever
Yes, marketers love these because there is some evidence they boost response rates. But really, when have you ever visited a website, had a giant ad pop up on the screen, and not been annoyed?
To users, these are no different from telemarketers calling at dinner time. Don't you agree we should do everything in our power to put a stop to them?
Banning Keyword Stuffing
So, you finally found the article or resource you are looking for. Or at least you thought so, until you noticed that the “post” is little more than a bunch of gibberish that seems to be glued together by seven variations on a generic search term.
Google is ignoring these articles and so are readers, so why do marketers keep posting them?
Getting Rid of Fake Social Accounts
The marketers at Ashley Madison aren’t the only ones who have been caught using fake followers, false personalities, and armies of zombie social accounts. Every time you get a chat request for a person who isn’t really there, some small part of your online soul dies.
Back in 2012, a client surprised me by gaining 5000 followers overnight. Yes, he bought them. When he refused to dump them, I fired him. Ethics anybody?
Removing False Deadline Counters Once and For All
A cornerstone of the high-pressure sales approach, these count down to the expiration of a deal or discount code. Except, if you come back the next day (having refreshed your browser and cleared your cookies) you find that the deadline has magically moved back.
If that’s what it takes to sell your product, you should probably get into another line of business. No?
Airing Out Stale Websites
Believe it or not, there are still sites out there from the 90s, sitting on the side of the information highway looking like broken down old trucks and washing machines. If we can’t get them brought into the current age, maybe it’s time to put these pages out of their misery. Just sayin'.
Scrubbing the Web of Broken Links
Few things are quite as frustrating as coming across a promising link and discovering that the item you are looking for used to be there. Sadly, because many businesses never bother to redirect old links on their websites, there are way more dead ends on the web than you might imagine.
Handing Out Jail Time for Scraped Content
I’ve saved the best for last. One of the more recent culprits being the insidious yourdomain.stif.re proxy "tool". For those who would pollute the Internet with scraped or otherwise subverted content that’s been pulled from a hard working person’s website, there should be a harsher response, a jail sentence, and perhaps a public caning.
Or at the very least, an afternoon spent sitting on their hands staring into the corner without the possibility of parole.
These probably aren’t all the changes we need to make to clean up our digital world, but they represent a good start. Can you think of any other laws you’d like to add? Note them in the comments below, or share our post and help us start working toward an online landscape that’s free of this type of pollution!
If you suspect your own site might be an offender, why not reach out to one of the team members at Kayak today. We'll help you sort it out fast.