Home – New Forums Marketing mastery What’s with this Blind Obsession for Parallax Websites now?

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  • #994418
    Warren Cottis
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    For a long time, one of the stats we are regularly told is that there’s 5 to 10 seconds before a visitor stays or leaves a website.

    So for the life of me, I do not understand how everyone has jumped on this Parallax Design Platform driven by Designers who typically don’t make money for their clients.

    What is this insanity?

    You don’t see serious money making internet marketers with these type of websites.

    They push for giving the visitor an immediate idea of structure and purpose.

    When did endless scrolling become Fun?

    When did a full width initial image become the best form of engagement when our brains can take in so much more in seconds?

    When did losing your understanding of where you are in a website’s scrolling structure become a good idea?

    I have an open mind… so please tell me anyone how Parallax Websites make the pathway to internet money easier?

    #1196531
    Dave Gillen – Former FS Concierge
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    I’m with you Warren! I like the old saying that lures are designed to catch fishermen not fish, and that’s how I see those parallax designs.

    I haven’t yet recommended one for a client. I generally find it’s better to have a little more thought about what your prospect needs to know or find in that first 5 seconds and make sure they get it without distraction.

    Dave

    #1196532
    Aidan
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    It’s a design thing I’m afraid and like many design things is not coming from a business sense point of view. Just recently had to tell a client to edit their background video that was leading to over 30 second load time. Thing was nobody took any notice of the thing anyway!

    #1196533
    Blueedge
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    I’m glad I’m not the only one – I had no idea that’s what they were called but hate them. Who’s got time to wait for an image to load only to be told to click on or scroll down?

    Isn’t this how websites used to look? I remember a few years back it was all about one page wonders. I reckon they are designed with today’s “younguns” in mind – they’ve been attached to their mobile devices since birth and can’t see without pretty pictures and easy to understand wording

    #1196534
    eWAY
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    Just to clarify [USER=2563]@Blueedge[/USER] “Parallax” is when you see an image scrolling down at a different speed to the rest of the website when you scroll.

    It sounds like you’re referring to websites where they have a full page image (or HTML 5 video sometimes) that you then scroll down to see any other content.

    Personally, I think this type of website does have it’s usefulness, although interestingly we’re starting to see a lot of our larger partners now use full width, but 2/3rds length hero images with one or two calls to action buttons – possibly an indication of the currently “accepted” higher lead acquiring website design.

    Check out magento.com xero.com sageone.com.au etc as examples.

    Maclean

    #1196535
    MichaelDigital
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    Yes, I also investigated paralex images that appear to be ‘behind’ the page-it is a trend for CMS sites because it is so easy to implement, it gives the builder a feeling of accomplishment, but it achieves very little.
    It is like a lot of customers of websites do not understand websites, or digital marketing-so they get caught up on aesthetic candy, just another trend another ‘red herring’!

    #1196536
    bb1
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    Just another excuse for a web designer to go to their client and say you need another rebuild of the site, please hand over the next bucket of money.

    #1196537
    JohnW
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    I suspect “get rich quick” affiliate marketing schemes may have been an influencer behind this. The principal wants thousands of affiliates pushing their product ASAP. They don’t want the process held up while the affiliates work out what pages to publish and the copy for them.

    I imagine the strategy works for some principals but there will be countless affiliates wasting their time in the process.
    Regs,
    JohnW

    #1196538
    JohnW
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    PS All,
    I just remembered this FS thread, “Is my website Easy to Use” where a heat map of the Home page was published. It’s not a parallax site but its Home page graphics use similar large pics and little text content. And, where do the viewers eyes go?

    To the words,
    to the words,
    to the words!

    We still have a lot of slider/carousel designs out there which are equally as bad but for different reasons.

    I think some web designers are being misled/confused by a combination of social media (image oriented sites like Fb, Instagram & Pinterest) and smartphone communication issues – smartphone users tend not to visit many pages vs desktop users.

    Not to mention that the hardest element of website production to get from a client ARE the words.

    So, spit out lots of 1 page sites quickly and keep the money rolling in…

    Over the years we’ve seen animated gifs, Flash websites and many, many simple web page publishing systems come and go. (Anyone remember Google/MYOB’s Atlas system?)

    Hang on Warren, there will be some other insanity next year. (G’s AMP? I see G is already warning people NOT replace mobile enabled with AMP sites.)

    For 22 years I’ve been saying that most of the money spent on Internet marketing is wasted, all that changes is the range of glittering baubles on which to waste it.
    Regs,
    JohnW

    #1196539
    Byron Trzeciak
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    It’s definitely something clients ask for and it’s about the education of what it does to site speed and user experience to try to deter them. I remember when parallax came out and it was interesting to see backgrounds change on the fly etc but that’s it all ways, a glittering bauble as John describes it well.

    Parallax is almost the new version of the slider but you just know there are plenty of sites out there using both of those.

    Not to mention the unclear messages that are displayed over the top as the business tries to be witty and clever and ends up just being confusing and misunderstood.

    The issue is compounded when most of the single page sites try to ranking for every single search term or more likely none at all. Without a blog or creating distinct pages for your products and services then one page websites don’t work very well search wise either.

    I guess it’s fashionable in web design at the moment but you only have to look back at “fashion” over the past 40 years to realise that many of us have made some pretty terrible choices at times in our life, parallax and sliders will both be included in those bad choices.

    #1196540
    JohnW
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    Do you folk want to add your experience, knowledge and voice to the request for SEO help for a 1 page website in this FS thread.

    I’ve nailed my colours to the mast on the topic.

    What do you think? Am I conservative or over the top?
    Regs,
    JohnW

    #1196541
    JohnW
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    Hi Warren,
    I checked a 2014 page of “inspirational” single page websites:

    Mar 14: “22 Fresh Single Page Websites for Your Inspiration

    I only explored down to #8. Google has currently indexed the following page numbers on the domains:

    1. mylakemap.lt = 105 pages
    2. builtthings.com = 73 pages
    3. “Paper” is a Facebook page
    4. crated.com/ = 688,000 pages
    5. theartoftexture.com/ = 1 page
    6. emorybubble.com/ = 25,700 pages. This seems to be a Uni student “news” forum.
    7. teamtreehouse.com/ = 298,000 pages
    8. plentific.com/ = 549,000 pages

    A very small sample I know and one is actually a Facebook page. Of the rest, 86% of these business owners don’t appear to have been “inspired” by a one page site for long.

    Maybe you should start targeting the one page websites business owners with your services? ;)
    Regs,
    JohnW

    #1196542
    MD Clean
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    A good website will tell a good story and there is nothing in and of itself that using a Parallax approach can’t achieve in helping to tell a good story IMO.

    Like Byron says though, if it comes at the expense of speed, AND people are accessing the site on mobile, then the result will be to turn customers away.

    Parallax and 1 page are not mutually exclusive though and most people just do them terribly.

    Personally, I have been thinking about using Parallax for a new site but I want the parallax images below the fold so that all images load in time for people’s normal reading or scanning speed. It might be really hard to achieve.

    Otherwise, I might go with a medium.com-type approach with a full width hero image followed by text.

    #1196543
    JohnW
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    MD Clean, post: 231777, member: 58759 wrote:
    A good website will tell a good story and there is nothing in and of itself that using a Parallax approach can’t achieve in helping to tell a good story IMO.

    Like Byron says though, if it comes at the expense of speed, AND people are accessing the site on mobile, then the result will be to turn customers away.

    Parallax and 1 page are not mutually exclusive though and most people just do them terribly.

    Personally, I have been thinking about using Parallax for a new site but I want the parallax images below the fold so that all images load in time for people’s normal reading or scanning speed. It might be really hard to achieve.

    Otherwise, I might go with a medium.com-type approach with a full width hero image followed by text.
    Hi Paul,
    Be very careful about what you do. You seem to have a lot at stake with your current web presence.

    I’d have to disagree with your blanket proposition that:

    “A good website will tell a good story and there is nothing in and of itself that using a Parallax approach can’t achieve in helping to tell a good story IMO.”

    Two questions:

    1. Who wants a “story” if they are looking for and comparing commercial cleaning services?
    2. Who will you tell your story to?

    1. Who wants a “story” if they are looking for commercial cleaning services?
    The usability studies I’ve seen suggest, “parallax scrolling to be more effective when used in a hedonic and fun context.”

    Do you think potential clients for commercial cleaning services want hedonism or fun? (What goes on in Gold Coast commercial premises after dark? :D)

    Web page usability studies indicate that people scan web pages for concepts, they don’t usually “read” web pages like a story book’s pages.

    If your parallax page has text scrolling over images, it will be harder to read, won’t be understood or remembered as well and people usually stop reading faster.

    I suggest business owners remember the golden rule of the Internet…

    As a user, I’m in charge of where I go and what I see.

    It seems, some one page parallax websites are being used to try to get around this “golden rule”. They will fail if this is their objective. You don’t need to go far to see the extent we will go to preserve our control.

    What’s the current biggest problem on the web for Internet marketers?

    Ad blockers! There are more installed than there are active Twitter accounts.

    Why are they installed?

    Because advertisers are trying to take control of our web screens and already 300+ million of us have installed software to stop them usurping OUR CONTROL!

    2. Who will you tell your story to?
    People want RELEVANT information. If you don’t give it to your page visitor quickly, he/she will be gone.

    So, who are you going to aim your story at? Were you thinking of every type of commercial business owner or manager in the Gold Coast?

    If I manage a club that needs commercial cleaning services, how relevant will your “story” be to me if it is also must include info aimed at schools, offices, pubs, medical centres and body corporates? I don’t see how you can make your info relevant to all these market segments on a single page.

    IMHO, If you can’t solve this problem, most visitors will leave before you get to finish your “story” and ask them to take your desired action.

    The above are a bunch of ways that a parallax page may inhibit effective “story” telling.

    What You Seems to Have at Stake

    If you switch your current site to a parallax site on Google…

    Your business name search: Your current business name search lists SEVEN of your pages and their descriptions. This will likely be cut back to ONE page. You won’t look very important compared to your competitors when that happens.

    There will be a large number of search terms where you will drop out of the top 10 results.

    You can only target one of the following search terms where you are currently on Google’s first page. Which market segment ranking terms do you want to lose?

    • commercial cleaners gold coast
    • office cleaners gold coast
    • call centre cleaners gold coast
    • club cleaners gold coast
    • pub cleaners gold coast
    • contract cleaners gold coast
    • medical centre cleaners gold coast
    • body corporate cleaners gold coast

    I’m sure there are many more…

    If you switch to a single parallax page, it looks like you will take yourself out of the SE referral running against these commercial cleaning competitors:

    • MRC
    • Absolute
    • Wortheverycent
    • Autonomous
    • Corpclean
    • Gold Coast Cleaning
    • Preferred Cleaning
    • Jazz Cleaning
    • Emerald Cut

    Please research and think very carefully about the impact this may have on your business.

    You may want to search on Google for: SEO parallax website problems

    There are heaps of articles that explain the problems. Eg:

    Be Careful About These 6 Web Design Trends in 2016

    “Are Hamburger Menus, Parallax Scrolling and Complex Typography a help or a hindrance?”

    “Parallax has a few potential issues:

    Bad for SEO. As sites that utilize parallax scrolling tend to be made up of one page, there’s usually little in the way of content that can be crawled by the search engines. This is especially true as text tends to be embedded in graphics.

    Can reduce performance. Due to the heavy use of graphics and JavaScript, a page can get clogged up on load. And it’s certainly a headache for mobile users. Load times on mobile tends to be very poor when parallax is used, due to the heavy use of JavaScript.”

    There have been so many “cool”, new web publishing functions I’ve seen over the years…

    I’m reminded of a comment in a very, very old usability study way back in the day when animated GIFs were new. The respondents answer to “do you like them?” was, “if I want cartoons, I’ll go to the movies“?

    Most of the money spent on Internet marketing over the years has been wasted. All that changes are the new and glittering baubles on which to waste it.

    Paul, I’ve respected your many comments and positive contributions on FS over the years. Please, think long and hard before you replace your current site.

    Give me a call. No charge to you for a phone consult on this issue.
    Regs,
    JohnW

    #1196544
    MD Clean
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    Dear John,

    Thanks for your concern. It is heartfelt and genuine and I truly appreciate it.

    I am not planning on changing my cleaning site to parallax… just making the point that you can add pages and blogs to a front page built as a parallax. My aim is to launch new business(es) soon.

    Given the propensity to scan web pages and that the human mind can take in images more effectively than text, the images can help to tell a story.

    My opinion is that most designers have become too minimalist and that a lot of designers don’t leave room to tell the story.

    My form of story telling – which I probably fail at – is to try to tell the customers story – in my field it is mostly about having had previous bad experiences.

    I have been reading lately about category vs exact key word pages and I still prefer the latter so you can actually expect my site to fill out in the future.

    Once again John, I really appreciate the offer and I always look forward to your advice and when I stop getting distracted, will be putting a lot of it into practice!

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