Beginner’s Guide to Splash Pages and Its Uses
What is a splash page and what are its uses? Simply put, Splash screen (or splash page) is a front page of a web-site that doesn’t provide the actual content, but offers visitors some kind of intuition or background information about what the site is about.
Designers use splash pages in their portfolios to impress potential clients with eye-candy. Companies tend to make use of them to draw users’ attention to their latest products.
And users literally can’t stand them, because splash pages usually take a long time to load and provide (almost) no navigation options — except of “entering the site”.
Depending on designers’ creativity, splash pages use more or less attractive visual elements. Splash pages usually have a very simple structure — mostly just an image with few text lines and links.
Splash Page and Landing Page
Unlike a squeeze page or a landing page, splash pages don’t necessarily ask visitors to enter their names or email address. The basic purpose of a splash page is to inform visitors of something, such as a new company update or a thought.
Splash Page Design
A typical splash page contains minimal copy, a background image, and most importantly a link that takes the visitor to the main website.
A splash page can be a welcome screen to the main website or a teaser that gets visitors excited for the website they’re about to view.
There are special types of splash pages because they are industry-specific, they do not have an exit link, and force the visitor to verify their age before granting access to the main website.
The design of these pages sometimes isn’t related to the overall site design. And although most sites don’t use them, splash pages are sometimes necessary and therefore remain popular.
In fact, there are some situations in which we might want or might even need to use them.
People wonder, what is a splash page, and what are its uses? we have already touched on its meaning, so let’s discuss about some phenomenal uses and components of effective splash pages:
1. Splash pages display disclaimers or warnings
This are supposed to restrict access to content such as pornography, advertising, or gambling (as is required by law).
2. Draw visitor's Attention
They are necessary in drawing visitors’ attention to an important message such as approaching deadline, critical update, latest release, news, slogan etc.
3. Visitors are supposed to select the language they want to use or the country they come from — to direct users to the appropriate version of the site.
4. Visitors can choose between a low-bandwidth version (HTML — Dial-Up) and high-bandwidth version (Flash — cable, DSL). Sometimes one can also choose the “accessible” version containing only text without images.
5. The designer informs visitors about site requirements such as used browsers, screen resolution as well as used Flash, Java, Quicktime etc. and suggests to choose the “right” configuration and download plug-ins for “optimal” site presentation.
6. Visitors can select the preferred view mode – for instance, standard mode and full-screen mode.
7. Multiple sites share the same domain. Or a large site tries to communicate its most important sections directly.
8. Splash page is supposed to include hints for browsing the site and explains the main sections.
9. Designers use splash page to awake excitement for the actual content of the site.
10. Sound is announced. Visitors are asked to turn on their loudspeakers to enjoy the Flash-show or Midi-experience (yes, apparently Midis are still alive, and are involved in one of the many uses of a splash page).
11. Splash pages are used as an additional form of advertising.
12. The decision to use a splash page is design-driven and realizes some designer’s idea.
Splash pages might or might not be popular enough, but one thing is for sure. Correctly used, they can be of immense use to your website. Wrongly employed, and they can mar your grace.
These many uses of a splash page can help you find the right path. If you desire it, that is.