Sunday, June 12, 2005

When is Too Much Too Much?

This post over at the blog Selling On Ebay encourages all business web site developers to be "closing on every page of the site." I can imagine there are some businesses that could benefit from the advise. But in the bigger picture I believe those businesses would be a very small percentage of the total.

AOL is currently running a commercial on spam protection. A man (representing unwanted spam) comes out from behind a pillar at the door to a business and starts shouting about free offers and "you are a WINNER" at people walking into the building.

The advise offered at Selling on Ebay has the same in-your-face feeling. When listing priorities for developing a web site, or any collateral, if every page is a selling page I can only imagine how negative and irritating that would be for visitors, prospects, and clients.

The writer of the advise goes on to say, "...when you continually close throughout your pages, you increase your chances for success. You build deeper relationships with customers and prospects; you guide readers through your site; you usher people toward the shopping cart; you up-sell and cross-sell, loading their cart up with extras and complementary products; and you generally get them to move in your direction or begin saying yes to your entreaties".

Being "ushered" around a site doesn't sound like very much fun at all. It feels like walking into a store to be greeted by salesperson that never shuts up and keeps nudging you every time you look away from where you are being directed. How any of what the writer recommends can, in his words, "build deeper relationships", I have no idea.

I would imagine the writer has had some success as an Ebay merchant, and in that context, to other online auction sellers his advise may make sense. I am going to continue to use marketing as a means to get invited into peoples lives and shy away from pushing my way in.