Being demanding

A pet peeve is company websites that demand personal details before telling you anything useful. You can't read case studies, get product details or even download SDKs to see if they would fit with your project. They are insisting on something of high value from you - your personal details and the implied access to you that gives. But in return they offer nothing first. You will still be spending your time to determine if what is being offered is what you are looking for, and if it provides value to you.

This is a terrible way to start a relationship. From previous companies I've worked at and from friends, the reported rate of junk information entered is between 40 and 100%. I was even advised by one company to “enter junk, everyone else does”. The usual rationalisation is that it is better to ignore the junk (and annoy the people who had to provide it), than miss a single lead. The latter is measurable but the former not, since you have no idea how many gave up and left for the competition.

Hiding content also prevents indexing by search engines, and people can't link to it. The solution is easy - it is perfectly okay to ask for details (but not require them), and to ensure people can communicate with you once they have found you are a good match. Ironically many of those sites that provide the terrible start to the relationship also make it hard to continue once you know you do want to proceed.


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