Spartan Spark

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Remember back in April of 2015 when Google rolled out its algorithm to penalize websites that weren’t mobile-friendly? Well they’re at it again, this time rolling out an algorithm to deal with those pesky pop-up ads. As of January 10, 2017, Google will penalize sites having what they consider to be “intrusive” pop-ups by lowering their ranking in the search engines.

What Will Google Consider to be “Intrusive” Pop-ups?

By "intrusive pop-ups", Google is referring to the following types of pop-up adverts:

  • Those that cover the main content of the site (immediate or delayed)
  • Those which the user has to dismiss before moving onto the main content
  • Those using a layout where an ad fills the screen so users have to scroll down "below the fold" before they can access the main content
  • Also included here are pop-ups demanding that users enter an email address to receive a newsletter or to view the site's main content

Why is Google Doing This?

Google is always looking for ways to improve the user’s overall web experience. In their opinion, pages with intrusive pop-ups provide a poorer experience to users than pages where content is immediately accessible. The offending pages will be indexed lower by Google, causing the pages to fall in ranking, thus affecting their search engine optimization.

Google has stated that the move should eliminate the frustrations that accompany intrusive pop-ups.

Not All Pop-ups Will be Penalized

It is important to note that not all pop-ups will be penalized. Some pop-ups will still be allowed, including those that alert the reader to the use of cookies and those that require log-in details for special access.

Spartan Spark's Take on This Change

We think this is a positive move by Google and we are totally excited to see it roll out. Pop-ups are not a good way to reach your target audience, in our opinion, they are more a way to try to force people to look at what you want them to look at. Users generally don't like being told what to do or where to go, so the usual response to pop-ups is to leave the site completely. A far smarter way to reach your target audience is to entice them to come to you, to use your service, buy your products… all of their own volition.

  Posted: Friday, September 2nd, 3:30pm 3 years ago

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