05 Oct Are Social Media Buttons Hindrances to Your Website’s UX?
Adding social media buttons are said to be very useful marketing effort. It’s said to bring back real results. However, how much that claims are proven to be true? After all, adding social media buttons on your website can make it looks cluttered. So, when are the best situation to put them on?
Downside of Adding Social Media Buttons
Load Slower. Adding the buttons mean that you add more data load on your website page. There are more images to load (albeit tiny) and string of data behind the button. This certainly can be a bad user experience (UX) for those who access your website with slow-medium speed connection. Indonesia has average internet speed, so majority of local users will likely be happier with less data to load when browsing a website. After all, they don’t need to wait long to fully view your webpage.
Website Design Clutter. Beside cutting off load time, the absence of social media buttons also make your website more organised. More often than not, social media buttons are designed with shapes and colours befitting of the respective platform. Their colourful tiny buttons can be a total anomaly to your website design which uses certain colour shades. Indeed, the buttons can be specifically designed to fit your website design, but several tiny buttons lining up still can be quite an eyesore. It can also distract users who you need to focus on the content you provide.
Not Mobile Optimised. As if those are not enough, social media buttons are usually not optimised for mobile users. When clicked, they often led users to another page that require users to login to their social media account. These buttons are supposed to ease users in sharing content of your website, not making them go through exhausting process.
Many users aware of this inconvenience of clicking social media buttons, so they choose to manually copy-paste the link instead to be put through the exhausting lengthy process. After all, desktop users can quickly copy paste the URL, while mobile users, both iOS and Android users, can just use the share link feature in their respective browser app.
The Sharing Era Has Passed
Years ago, users often share content they found interesting. URL sharing in social media had become popular. Not only keen on sharing their personal life, users like to share interesting content to open discussion with their friends on social media. That’s where the claim of social media button is an effective marketing aid comes from. However, with the many additional features of social media nowadays, users are now able to share content within platform, such as the Share button on Facebook and Retweet with Comment on Twitter to repost and comment on content of other users.
Users surely still share content, but with the popularity of social media that not share-friendly across platform like Instagram, URL sharing is not as popular anymore. They prefer to share link via private messaging such as WhatsApp or LINE to their friends, family, and colleague. Therefore, they find copy-paste feature more useful than social media buttons.
When to Use Social Media Buttons?
With all the downsides, it’s better if you use social media buttons when absolutely necessary. For example using them on each articles in your blog section. Articles are often long, contains informative, lengthy, and collaborative content. With the buttons, users who want to share your articles that they find useful can just click them. After all, social media buttons are often expected in a blog post. It’s even better if you optimised your social media buttons so they can function seamlessly on mobile phone.
Even social media buttons have their own downsides, they are still useful to be put on your website. However, they can’t just put on carelessly. Great website is an optimised one from all sides, whether design, speed, or functions. Use them right, they won’t be a hindrance of your website’s UX.
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