Web International Awards

payday loan

1

APR 2010 0

Never deceive your visitors! based on a true story…

Just the other day I stumbled upon an unexpected ad on a television's website. The add was about IQ tests and pointed to a site where you could take one. I clicked and was taken to the website which had a thorough IQ test. At least their about page stated so. Bottom line is that this test looked serious, or at least it was more serious than the ones I've seen over the years. I've decided to take it.

There were no time penalties, a nice progress bar indicated where you were throughout the entire testing. Overall it was a nice experience, which seemed close to perfection. Oh but was I wrong! I don't know exactly how many questions were in there, but I think they were more than 50.

After roughly 30 minutes, I completed the task. I was asked to input my name and email and hit submit to have my results emailed to me. I knew ads on such a high traffic television site couldn't be cheap, and this wouldn't be a scam, so I went on and put in my details and clicked the submit button.

The next page was a disaster, completely ruining my experience, making me bounce off the website and write this article. Why? The thank you page didn't contain my test result. Instead it contained 2 phone numbers to which I could send a 5 Euro SMS to pay for the results they just said would be emailed to me. This was the first point in the entire process when I saw it is a paid service. After spending 30 minutes! And no, I won't pay and I didn't pay.

Let your users know your service isn't free right from the get go!

But would I've paid if I knew from the start it's not a free test? Probably! They lost a happy customer in added time, and they probably lost and will lose many more with this stupid system.

Tips to improve your paid service sign up process

  1. Always let your users know it's a paid service from the moment they arrive to your page
  2. Payment page should never be the last one of the signup process, unless users know from start how much the product or service costs
  3. If the signup process is lengthy provide visual progress bars
  4. Never cheat with these progress bars to fool users into thinking they're close to finish line when they're not

Conclusion

Always let your users know if they can use your paid service, and let them no before they start using it. Doing so afterward will probably make you loose almost every client. Always be honest about your offered service and price because at the slightest misinformation your customers will go straight to your competitors.

If you have any similar experiences or any other tips please share them in the comments. Please share the link with your friends. You can stay updated to new content via our RSS feed or by email.

Published on Thursday, April 1st, 2010 at 5:00 pm in usability.

About Bogdan Pop

Bogdan Pop is a young Romanian entrepreneur who runs WebRaptor. He is a web developer with awesome design skills, who enjoys writing about everyday's work and usability. He relaxes by taking photos every once in a while and by mixing french electronic music. Connect with him via Twitter.
 

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