Why splash pages are bad


August 24, 2010


Splash pages are intro pages that were very popular in the early days of the web. They would typically be flash introductions or some other type of introduction with an ‘enter site’ link.

There are many reasons we would advise against using them for your website. The most important one off the bat is that Google will treat it as your homepage. As there tends to be a lack of text on these types of pages, there will be no keywords to rank your page for and your hits will suffer dramatically.

Even worse is if the link to the rest of the site is embedded in the flash movie. This means that Google may not be able to find your site at all!

Jared Spool of Macromedia said it best when you used the following analogy:

“When we have clients who are thinking about Flash splash pages, we tell them to go to their local supermarket and bring a mime with them. Have the mime stand in front of the supermarket, and, as each customer tries to enter, do a little show that lasts two minutes, welcoming them to the supermarket and trying to explain the bread is on aisle six and milk is on sale today.”

You will also find that most splash pages don’t have the same primary navigation as the rest of the site. Some will even drastically change the design when you go from the splash page into the proper site. This will be confusing to users and enforce the idea that they are visiting two separate sites (remember those in doubt, click away from your site!).

Our final point is that users find splash pages downright irritating. When they type your URL into the address bar and go to your website, do you really want to make them click another button to reach your site for real? Plus once they have seen the opening message once, they will head straight for the ‘Enter Site’ link each time, so why not just remove that annoying obstacle.

Don’t get us wrong, there are times where splash pages are appropriate, but for 99% of websites we strongly recommend not to use them.

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