Don't let Surfers see your Underpants

The Grokdotcom newsletter is one of my favorites and is always filled with great info on converting more of your hard earned traffic into sales.

Although this article talks about the disconnect "corporate sites" can have, I also think it's relevant to affiliate and SEO sites. I thought about it because I just did a partial re-design and have lots of pretty new pages, but in doing a Google search found LOTS of my old design pages are still #1. So when surfers click through to a completely different design, I know it breaks the flow and creates a disconnect. I KNOW my underwear is showing - is YOURS???

Here are some Grok snippets - love the way these guys write!

"You’ll recall Tamara Adlin from my last issue– she who was concerned that you let your customers pee when they desperately wanted to. She was also worried you might be losing customers by revealing your corporate underpants. She writes: Do the browse pages and search pages on your web site look so different that it's clear they are owned by different groups in your company? If so, your corporate underpants are showing.

Customers don't think about shopping as a series of 'pages' or 'features.' They think of the holistic experience. So humor them.

Trust me on this: your underpants obviously matter to you, but your visitors could care less about them. And your online efforts are only ever about … everyone, in unison … the visitor!"

Read the rest here: Don't Let Your Customers See Your Corporate Underpants. Note: Scroll down some to get to the article - then come back and discuss it.

Linda Buquet
5 Star Affiliate Programs


'branded experiences'

Thing is you only get a truly effective brand experience if you *do* design with the customer in mind

The other underpants

I'm seeing a lot of sites lately that look tacked together. They add a blog, a forum, a custom homepage, a directory... and they all look different. Main navigation disappears from one "section" to the next, background and logo colors change, or the logo disappaears altogether.

If you want to add functionality, you need to be able to do it seamlessly. Free tools look like free tools. Not very credible...

Welcome Tamara! Great analogy. :)

Call to Action Book

The Call to Action Book is *very* good. I won one on a few months ago and just started reading it recently.

Welcome Tamara - Great Article

I really liked your article, especially the attention getting title. Thanks for joining ThreadWatch and commenting. Hang around, this is a great place to be!


Some good stuff on that site. I bought the call to action book but half the book was put together upside down, dont know if I ought to send it back or just put up with it, heh.

Usability studies show that providing people believe they are still following the "scent" of what they are after then they will put up with a heck of a lot. It is remarkable how much in fact. Of course, just because some will put up with it doesn't mean enough will and you will definately be damaging your conversion rate (meaning you will need a hell of a lot more traffic to make the same profits).

I'd never seen that site,

I'd never seen that site, looks fantastic!

Thanks for the tip, am now subscribed :)

so true

"Another really common 'underpants-revealer' is when the sales page of a site is on one domain, but the shopping cart is one another." So true.

You know when I wrote this I was also thinking of affiliates. Some make these landing pages that are full of keyword spiderfood to get the SE hit and not written for humans - then you go to their homepage which may be very content-rich and well done - then you click the affiliate link, end up at the merchant site which is yet a totally different design. THEN like you said if the merchant's cart is on another domain - boy have we taken this consumers for a roller coaster ride. And we wonder why conversion rates are so low...

spiderfood not humanfood!

hi Linda et al! I stumbled across this reference to the 'underpants' thing i wrote for the Eisenbergs. I love the application of the idea to affiliates. It's underpants by definition...different corporations can't NOT wear different underpants (we hope) and when they show, it's not a good experience. Won't it be a great day when corporations realize that streamlining the experience for the customer is more important that creating 'branded experiences' if one leads to purchases and the other doesn't?? --tamara adlin

Grokdotcom is the bomb

They're awesome. The new 'Call to Action' book is really excellent, and also has a bit about this 'underpants' concept. The book seems to be mostly a complilation of the best parts of their newsletters, but it's worth it to have all that knowledge distilled into one tome.

Another really common 'underpants-revealer' is when the sales page of a site is on one domain, but the shopping cart is one another. I'm pretty certain being shifted to a new domain just when they're about to pull out their credit card spooks some people.