5 Tips to Keep Pop-Ups From Harming Your SEO

You are aware of them, you like them, and you certainly despise them. We are talking about Pop-ups! The first question that usually POPS up is can a popup have a detrimental impact on our SEO? With a median conversion rate of 11.09 percent, they are a content material marketer’s best buddy. However, since Google announced in 2018 that websites with invasive pop-up adverts may be devalued, using pop-ups the wrong way can be risky. 

In this piece, we will go through which types of pop-ups are harmful to your SEO efforts to convert users into consumers without putting your site at risk of being punished by Google. As a leading SEO agency in Australia, our experts at Bakoffis would look to enlighten you all to dispel some of the confusion regarding pop-ups and SEO. You will discover how to effectively deploy pop-ups on your website without jeopardising your past SEO efforts.

Advantages and disadvantages

Pop-up windows appear to be a two-edged sword. You adore and despise them since they can be both useful and dangerous if utilised incorrectly.

They have a few advantages:

  • Pop-ups are great for attracting the attention of your audience. This is major because they appear automatically when one’s visits a website, thus grabbing the attention immediately. 
  • With the ability to grab the attention of others, they can aid in increasing conversion rates.
  • It’s possible to make it completely unique.
  • It aids in the promotion of your brand.

The disadvantages are as follows:

  • It can be a big huge disadvantage. If not employed appropriately, it has the potential to drive away your current audience.
  • When consumers see pop-up adverts, they feel as if they were being shoved down their throats because these windows are forced. 
  • Multiple ones strewn over your website on various pages instantly translate to “spam” and can easily annoy the visitor.

The 5 Tips to Keep Pop-Ups from Harming Your SEO

Here are seven tips for using pop-ups without jeopardising your search engine optimization.

  1. Understand Which Interstitials Are No-Goes: The mobile interstitial penalty from Google is aimed toward invasive interstitials. It’s worth noting that the term “interstitial” can be applied to any popup or overlay. Not all interstitials, however, should be considered obtrusive.

If you have difficulty dismissing interstitials or spammy interstitials, your mobile website may be devalued. This is due to the fact that Google’s indexing is now mobile-first. As a result, your SERP position may be less beneficial than you believe. These are just a few examples of interstitials that reduce the accessibility of your content.

  • Users must close popups with content-covering popups in order to read the rest of the article.
  • Any independent interstitials must be removed before consumers may access your content.
  • Interstitial-looking page layouts are actually above the fold.

Avoid advertising that has previously been penalised or disapproved by Google, such as:

  • Users are interrupted when moving between sites and before reaching your homepage by interstitial or splash adverts.
  • When a user clicks on your page, pop-up windows appear.
  • Welcome mats, new window popups, and other obnoxious advertisements
  • Overlay models are difficult to close or reroute users who unintentionally click them.
  • Advertising in the form of popups and invasive lightbox ads.

Interstitials triggered by exit intent are still allowed, according to Google’s John Mueller. However, SEO news and experts say that these should not be relied upon as it is not a good idea to upset the visitors. 

2. Continue Using Non-Intrusive Interstitials: Non-intrusive interstitials are not penalised by Google. This is the information that you are legally required to display to restrict content or keep users informed, such as age verification interstices and cookie use notifications, which fall under this category. Other popups, such as tabs, banner advertising, and slide-ins that take up a small area of your screen (5 percent is advised) are also okay as long as they are simple to delete.

The SEO experts in Australia and around say that you should avoid full-screen overlays, welcome mats, and ad models if you’re not sure if your interstitials are invasive. When possible, use slide-in boxes with top banners instead of top banners. This allows users to see your material uninterrupted and does not interfere with the user experience.

3. Switch To Timed Pop-ups: If you absolutely must employ pop-ups and overlays, you should try to redesign them to be as unobtrusive as possible. The timing of your interstitials is one of the most important things you can adjust. Instead of showing a pop-up as soon as a visitor arrives on your website, time your pop-up to appear after they have finished reading your blog post. You can also limit how long pop-ups are displayed – a pop-up that closes automatically after three seconds of inactivity is preferable to one that does not close at all.

Honestly,  the issue with this type of interstitial is that timed pop-ups are only as effective as your content. If your content isn’t appealing enough to keep visitors going through your pages on the website and reading your content, consider investing in content material marketing before you start plugging it with advertisements.

4. Watch Out For “Gray Area” Interstitials: Some of the interstitials that have been affected by Google’s interstitial penalty may surprise you. For example, Mueller agreed that language selection pop-ups on international websites are likely to be undervalued since “yes, these are popups/interstitials too”. If you ARE using these or other “grey space” interstitials, such as sticky sidebars, related posts, share buttons, live chat packing containers, and coupon pop-ups, keep a close eye on your page’s performance. While WE don’t expect these to have a detrimental impact on search engine marketing, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

5. Use Permitted (But Intrusive) Pop-ups Cautiously: Some advertisements can be annoying, but they aren’t penalised. Although these “grey-area” popups are permitted, Google may take action against them in the future (they are certainly moving in this direction).

  • Interstitials from page to page: According to Mueller, when interstitials appear in the SERP, Google’s interstitial penalty devalues them. Interstitials between pages, on the other hand, are acceptable. We all know how much Google values user experience and how bad interstitials between sites are.
  • Interstitials triggered by exit intent: Mueller confirmed that popups generated by exit intent will not be penalised by this change. To prevent being on the wrong side of the interstitial penalty, add a no-index tag to your code.

If you utilise these interstitials, be warned that you may be fined soon. Google’s goal is to continually improve the user experience. It argues that these obtrusive interstitials degrade the user experience and have an impact on a website’s bounce rate, exit rate, and even time on site. This is why Google disrupts your digital marketing strategy.

Final Thoughts

So, years later, websites are still utilising pop-ups on mobile and are still ranking well! Even if you are not aware of this, you can exhale a sigh of relief because the update is unlikely to have had a significant impact on you. If you believe your site has been impacted by Google’s mobile interstitials penalty, read this post on how to recover.

As a leading SEO agency in Australia, we say that pop-ups are an excellent technique to increase the number of conversions on your website. Using them effectively will help improve the rating of your website in search engine results!

Have more questions? Get in touch with us directly!