Are you scaring your visitors?

Are your site visitors leaving before you even get a chance to capture their attention? If your site is playing audio, the answer is YES.

Many people are surfing the net a work, with or without their speakers muted. Some, like me, are playing music on Spotify or watching things on Netflix while surfing. When your page loads and music or videos automatically start, it’s annoying and in some cases leads to me leaving your site. If you playing music on your website, you may be chasing visitors away.

Is it ever OK to auto-play?

Yes. On rare occasions it is okay to have your music start when the page loads. If I’m clicking into your photo gallery, let your music play. If I’m clicking a link to visit your video, go ahead and auto-play. In both of these scenarios, I have clicked a link and knowingly expect that audio may start automatically. This gives me the opportunity to pause the other media that I may have playing (Hey, I’m watching last night’s Parenthood as I type this!)

But, I want to play my favorite song to set the mood!

If you absolutely must have your song playing, you need to include audio controls. Give me a way to turn the music off. Don’t hide the controls, make them visible. I’m not a fan of this option, I’d much rather be given the option to play the music rather than have that decision made for me. But, if we must compromise, visible audio controls are the way to go.

Go now. Check your site, do you have auto playing music? Have you disabled my ability to pause the music? Share your site below and I’ll let you know if I can easily find your audio controls.

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