July 22, 2008
According to an article in PC World Magazine, the average visitor spends between 25 – 45 seconds viewing the main page of a web site. That’s about enough time to read this article to the point you are at right now and, maybe, most of the way through the next paragraph.With that short an amount of time available to get someone’s attention, your main page better do a pretty good job of selling. The problem is, most main pages do not get the job done as well as they could.
Sure, you could hire a professional copywriter to re-work your sales page. Then all you have to do is keep testing different copy versions until you either run out of money or you hit upon the winning combination of words.
Or you could give the reader a gentle “slap in the face” and call their attention back to your site when they try to leave.
The face slap is actually a good idea, figuratively speaking, and it has been tried to various extents but with disappointing results.
A Brief History Lesson
It didn’t work very well because the browser was unable to tell whether the user actually intended to leave your site, or if he or she was just moving on to another page such as the FAQ or the order form.
The next generation of “slap in the face” visitor-stoppers were pop-ups. Website owners got away with using these for a while, but they really weren’t the answer either. For one thing, the exit pop-up strategy fell victim to the same technical flaw as the onUnload() function. It really didn’t know whether the visitor was actually leaving the site or simply going on to another page. Of course, the second problem was the fact that pop-ups were so annoying that an entire pop-up blocker industry quickly sprang up. Now all modern browsers have incorporated pop-up blocking technology right inside the product.
Other variations of the pop-up idea such as slide-ins, roll-overs and peel-downs came and went but none of these had the amount of impact necessary to stop a departing visitor dead in his tracks until the recent emergence of exit grab technology.
Exit Grab Technology is the answer to the “25 – 45 seconds” of viewing problem for three reasons.
- It actually “knows” when a user is trying to leave the site. It can differentiate between mouse clicks indicating that a user has chosen to go deeper into your site and mouse clicks indicating that a user is preparing to leave for good.
- When it’s triggered, the effect is so astounding that it actually does stop a user dead in his tracks.
Exit Grab Technology is a “slap in the face” that really works!
The true beauty of this new innovation lies in the fact that it has the ability to track mouse movements. As long as the mouse remains within the live area of your web page, it lies dormant. Let the mouse move outside of the live area, such as towards the URL line or the ‘X’ button, and it wakes right up and springs into action displaying your user-defined message in a big box in the middle of the screen. The user can close the box and keep reading. But if the user tries to leave again, the box pops right back up.
Of course, this technology doesn’t trap the user on your website. Users are free to ignore the box and move on; but most people don’t. They stop at least long enough to read the message inside of the box.
That message can be anything you want it to be. You could offer a discount, a free trial, free bonuses, or anything else that will make a sale. You can even this strategy on your Thank-You page and deliver a one-time offer after the sale.
Adding this technology to your website can definitely increase conversions by pulling the visitor’s attention back to your offer. It can also generate up-sell and cross-sell revenue. What you do with technology is entirely up to you.
Vincent Newton is the creator of Friend Inviter, a powerful tell a friend script that can increase traffic to any website.