Running social networks have proven eye opening in regard to how users interact with a website. One thing that I’ve noticed that I didn’t necessarily expect is that quite a few people click the logout button. Perhaps it’s because they have more than one account (tsk tsk as we don’t condone that) or because the user doesn’t want someone else in their house that shares the computer to fuck with their account. Regardless of the reason, it’s not something I’ve ever considered when building the logout workflow of a site. Typically my logout logic logs the user out (of course) and then redirects them back to the home page where they can continue to interact with the site or log back in or whatever.
Taking a cue from Twitter and thanks to a user suggesting that we should advertise our other sites a bit more, I decided to add in a logout page. Twitter’s page serves as a reminder that they offer mobile services, also worth noting my buddy Khary Mallea had already implemented a similar page over at konect.me as he pointed out to me when I had mentioned my seemingly miraculous discovery! By the way, everyone needs to go sign up for konect.me (which is a service for consolidating your social profile into a single profile) and konect with me
To jump back to the user feedback I had received, it suggested perhaps putting links to our other sites on the login page. That struck me as a bit counterintuitive and that’s what led me to add in the logout page. During login, I want to focus on the user logging in, getting rid of as much noise as possible. When they are logging out though, it’s a safe assumption that they may be done using the site for the moment, so giving them some additional options would be beneficial.
Before I get into the impact, I’d like to also mention that I added links to our other sites in the footer as well. History has shown me that most folks don’t interact with website footers, regardless of how fancy they are. So that being said, since the addition of the logout page (which came days after adding the links to the footer) traffic to the other sites in our network has increased by 100% or so on average. Quite the noticeable increase considering the small amount of effort that went into adding the page (it’s just text on a page, nothing fancy).
The increase has not led to a dip in traffic on our larger sites (which I wasn’t expecting but was monitoring), so it’s definitely a win-win. Moving forward, I will always be sure to include a logout page even if it’s just to say “thanks for stopping by, hope to see you back here soon”. Do you already use logout pages? I would love to hear about what sort of stuff everyone has put on their logout pages!