You’re searching for a product on your phone. You find a listing in the search results, select it and — fail! A pop-up has dominated the entire screen on your mobile device. And you can’t press the little “x” because it’s too close to the screen’s edge. All that’s left to do is leave the site.
Has something like this ever happened to you? Aside cork bicycle zone from the fact that it’s annoying as a user, think about what it’s doing to your business as a site owner. That’s one reason why avoiding intrusive pop-ups is an SEO best practice. Another is that they could cost you a ranking boost in Google.
Let’s explore intrusive interstitials as No. 3 in our series on Google’s page experience ranking update that rolled out between mid-June and early September 2021.
An intrusive interstitial is essentially a webpage pop-up that makes it hard for a mobile user to access the content they want.
When Google first talked about this issue in 2016, it gave some examples of intrusive interstitials:
A pop-up that covers the main content immediately after a person navigates to a webpage from the search results or while they are looking through the page.
A standalone interstitial that a person has to dismiss before accessing the main content.
A webpage with above-the-fold content similar to a standalone interstitial where the original content is inline underneath.