You want to know what really irritates the ever living crap out of me? When you go to a website and you can’t click the back button because they have configured it to lock on their page, disabling the back button. It’s like the line in the Eagles song, “Hotel California.” “You can check out anytime you want, but you can never leave”. I mean seriously; do they think that this incentivizes people to stay on the site and shop? No! It just pisses us off. Locking the back button is like having a department store and locking the door after people enter, and not allowing them to leave. Can you imagine if you went into a department store at your local mall and they locked the doors not allowing you to leave? It would not fly; no way. So why should locking people onto a website be any different? It shouldn’t be. It’s bad marketing, its bad business, it’s bad business etiquette, and it’s just downright rude.
I am a marketing guy, and I love coming up with new and innovational ways to market products and services, but there is a line that shouldn’t be crossed, and this is one of them. First of all, people do not like having anything forced down their throat, and once you try forcing someone to do something I think you are going to have the opposite effect of what you want; at least this is true with me. I emailed 15 people that I know and asked them all if this would make them stay on the site and possibly make a purchase. For those that answered no I asked them to answer one more question. “Would you ever consider going back to that site again?” and guess what, all 15 answered no that it would not make them stay on the site, and 13 of the 15 said they would never go back, that’s 86%. So to those of you out there that are practicing this low down method of marketing I have one thing to say to you: KNOCK IT OFF. Learn how to market ethically and responsibly without pissing the world off. When someone comes to your website they should be treated like a guest, because that is exactly what they are, and locking your guests up is not a very friendly thing to do. So please learn how to market the right way like the rest of us.