4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

Posted on November 6th, 2010 by Jean

You’re losing readers. Inadvertently, but none the less, there they go. You asked them to check out your friend’s blog.
 
“Click the link!”
 
So they did. I did.
 
I’m all for a good pimp. Believe me, my pimp hand is strong.
 
Your friend is great! I comment, check out their profile, and follow them on twitter. Your friend (my new friend) is pimping their friend’s website. I follow the bouncing link, and feast my eyes on a beautiful portfolio. Click on one? Why sure! Now I’m all wrapped up in an apron aficionado’s blog, drooling over apple recipes. Yes, this really did happen.
 
So now my break is over, and I’m closing windows. What should I see at the back of the group? Your page!
 
After meandering all over the internet, I forgot to leave you a comment!
 
How can you prevent me from wandering off and not finding my way back? Four little words: target equals underscore blank.
 
Inserting a little bit of html behind your links will open a new window instead of directing people away from your sight.
 

 
This holds true with buttons, links to Twitter, FaceBook, and blogging groups. Edit their code. It’s easy!
 

 
β€’ Do you use these four magical words?
β€’ Do you ever wander so far off the beaten path, you forget where you started?

Jean photo B16123E10292F5D0137E3C112C0110E4_zpsa65858d2.png

75 Responses to "4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying"

  1. This is the best advice I’ve seen in forever. -In fact, I stopped reading certain people specifically because their links to outside sources send me on this kind of chase.

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    Jean Reply:

    Thank you, Sue! It drives me crazy too. I’ve gotten use to pressing command to force a new window or tab to open, but thought this post could be of service.
    I miss your blogs.

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  2. YES! I do! I love that little code, and use it when I link in my blog…mainly because it irritates me when other people don’t.

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    Jean Reply:

    ::: high five ::: I’m glad you do use that code, Adriane! It makes life so much easier. Thank you!

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  3. Thanks for posting this Jean! My web host is set up so they just ask if I want links to open in a new window (I don’t have to use HTML any more), but I always wondered how to do it. Now I know for other sites and pages. πŸ™‚

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    Jean Reply:

    You’re so welcome, Stacy! I hope it is useful code in your future. I’m planning to post a tutorial on html mapping soon, which also might be of use. Enjoy your weekend!

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  4. Thanks Jean!

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    Jean Reply:

    You’re so welcome, Marian!
    Happy Weekend to you!

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  5. You are so right! Drives me crazy when it’s the same window and I Iose where I was. I am a mad clicker. I think it’s ADD to pretty shiny buttons and badges.

    My links open new windows and I usually double check them too.

    Great advice! I hope everyone reads this. πŸ™‚
    Angelia Sims Hardy recently posted..Live- Love- Laugh – Our First Dance

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    Jean Reply:

    Thanks, Angela. I think the ones who haven’t commented are madly fixing their html this morning. LOL!
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  6. Wow – Thanks Jean. Yes, I wander all over the place once someone sends me somewhere else. Great piece of advice!
    Diane recently posted..Dear Ozzy-

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    Jean Reply:

    Thanks, Diane. I wander too, and really enjoy finding new treasure! I just want to be able to thank the lead blog friend when I’m done.
    Great post at your blog this morning. Not sure if my comment posted.
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  7. Thank you! This is a great new thing to learn and I can’t wait to put it to use!

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    Jean Reply:

    You’re welcome, Sunny. I”ll bet you could post a tutorial blindfolded!
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  8. Thanks for this–you are a wealth of information, Jean! β™₯

    Get distracted? Me?

    Oh, look! A chicken!!

    [Reply]

    Jean Reply:

    Chicken? Where!?! LOL!
    Thanks, Beth!
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  9. Great advice Jean! I always try to do this when I have a choice, but now I have the code! I appreciate the wisdom.

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    Jean Reply:

    You’re very welcome, Chaplain Donna. It’s a pleasure to be of help. πŸ™‚ Happy Sunday!
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  10. Thank You Jean for the html trick. Now I can have a method to my maddness. I appreciate you helpful advice.

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    starla Reply:

    shoot madness has only one D sigh.

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    Jean Reply:

    You’re welcome, Starla. Don’t worry about the typo. I wrote a note to my daughter’s teacher this a.m., and think I have 2 errors on it. LOL! I need spellcheck.
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  11. Best advice ever! Thank you so much! I am going to go add these to all my links and delete my little message to “right click to open a new window”.

    Thanks so much for stopping by my blog earlier. It is so nice to meet you. I’m your newest follower.
    Jeannette recently posted..Wholl Be the Biggest Loser

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    Jean Reply:

    Oh Cool! Thank you, Jeannette. It’s a pleasure to be of help.
    Following you @ Twitter now. πŸ˜€

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  12. Oh hell to the no! I didn’t know that. That’s awesome info Jean. I’m going to try it now. I have those SITS badges on my page. My blogroll links I have the option of making open up in a new window. I need to go through and make them all like that though. Thanks again for keeping me in the loop. Although, I would think by now if somone doesn’t know how to right click and open up a new window, you might not be as internet savy as you thought (not you Jean, I mean anyone who doesn’t know how to right click so the link won’t take you away from the page you’re on!)
    Sherri recently posted..Halloween 2010

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    Jean Reply:

    Sherri, you are so funny!
    Good luck. You can do this!
    You’re welcome.
    Thanks for the right click info. I’m on a MAC, which is command + enter for a new window, but I didn’t know about the PC way. See, you rule!
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  13. Codes, clicks, html…I don’t even know where I am!

    :p love this advice.

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    Jean Reply:

    Once in a while, the geek in me breaks out. πŸ˜€

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  14. Love it! And so appropriate…I just recently discovered that “other” option when linking my own posts. People were leaving my current page to go to my old page and then not coming back to my current page. It was a dirty endless cycle. Thank you for trying to spread the word on how to end this madness. πŸ™‚
    P.S. Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting!!
    Mindy
    http://www.thesuburbanlife.com
    mindy@thesuburbanlife recently posted..Halloween 2010

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    Jean Reply:

    Thank you, Mindy! I’m glad you did discover this. Opening a new window is so appreciated! It’s the least I can do to help spread the word.
    You are welcome for the visit. Your blog is so adorable! Your photos so darling!

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  15. This is so incredibly useful. I could kiss you right now.

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    Jean Reply:

    Ok, but no tongue!

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    Helena Reply:

    Oops. Sorry about that. Next time, I promise not to lick your face.
    Helena recently posted..THAT was a busy week

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    Sedate Me Reply:

    Just make sure you gals take a picture (and post it here) next time that happens.

  16. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Helena and Helena, Jean Gallant. Jean Gallant said: there's an elephant in the room. http://wp.me/p122CP-Oj […]

  17. I always open links in a new tab with my mouse roller so it never occurred to me other people were not getting new windows. I’ll have to check my links.

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    Jean Reply:

    Hi Stacey ~ I try to remember to open a new page, but can’t always say that I do. I hope you find this tutorial useful.
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  18. OMG, I think some of my links send people away. EGADS! The ones that I added on my own send people away b/c I didn’t know about this. THANK YOU!!! : ) I’m off to see if I can figure it out. Otherwise, I’m emailing you.
    Mama Mary recently posted..is it okay to say gay- when you’re not gay

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  19. Hooray! I just changed the SITS badge on my site. And then just discovered a tab with the link function with my creating a post that asks me if I want to open the link in a new window. Didn’t even know it was there, hello!!! Thanks girl. : )
    Mama Mary recently posted..is it okay to say gay- when you’re not gay

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    Jean Reply:

    Mary, I’m proud of you! You did it, and discovered a new tool. A+++
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  20. Great advice Jean!!
    Gary recently posted..Photo of the Day – 11-09-10

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    Jean Reply:

    Thanks, Gary. πŸ™‚
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  21. Great post. i find it’s too easy just to publish what you want to share without realising the effect it has on your own work.

    Thanks for sharing πŸ™‚

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    Jean Reply:

    Good point, Jason. Doesn’t take much effort to add a bit of html to ensure your desired effect is obtained.
    Hope you’ve been well. I’m SURE you’ve been busy! Thanks for swinging by.

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  22. I thought I knew everything, EVERYTHING!
    My mind is a steel trap! I am usually such a genius!

    But. I. Did. Not,. Know. This.

    In awe of your HTMLedness,
    Deb
    San Diego Momma recently posted..PROMPTuesday 129- Your First Crush

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  23. Aw, tis nothing, San Diego Momma. Thank you! Wait’ll I really get techy! LOL.
    So nice to meet you. I’ll be right over.
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  24. Wow, I never actually thought about that but what a helpful piece of advice! And it’s definitely happened to me before.
    Charlotte recently posted..Atlantic City Halloween recap finally

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    Jean Reply:

    Thank you, Charlotte. I haven’t had enough coffee yet either, and know exactly what you mean. LOL!

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  25. And by “happened to me before” I mean getting sent on a wild goose chase. Forgive me. Way early and I haven’t had enough caffeine in my system just yet πŸ™‚

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  26. Popped in from SITS to say hi!

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    Jean Reply:

    Hi Blond Duck. How are you doing today? I appreciate your visit.

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  27. Just learned something I didn’t know, thank you

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    Jean Reply:

    You’re welcome, Souldose. I hope you are doing well.

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  28. Right you are!

    BTW: I’ve moved. New URL: http://istillfeelunusual.wordpress.com/

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    Jean Reply:

    Thanks for your new link, Sle!

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  29. I learn something new every day. Thank you, Jean! Also, is your pimp hand strong for smacking too?
    Pop recently posted..Friday Flip-Offs- 11-7 Pop’s Edition

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    Jean Reply:

    Naw, pop, but sometimes I’m in a kicking mood!

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    Pop Reply:

    Hopefully not with pointy-toed shoes!

    And I’m now using this in all my posts, so don’t you dare STRAY! πŸ˜›
    Pop recently posted..The Cross and Noogies

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  30. and thats the truth. lol
    Arts web show recently posted..Arts web show ep 4- Just like the movies

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  31. When did you become the wise old sage and start giving out these snip pits of wisdom? I hope this is not a new direction as I always came here for the good looking chics

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    Jean Reply:

    Hi James! Great to see you!
    Have no fear. Tutorials are few & far between.

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  32. Still loving this!!! I’m going to retweet it again. More people need to know about this trick.

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    Jean Reply:

    Awww, thanks, Helena!
    My girls are still enjoying Picnik. In fact (shhhh), I’m thinking of upgrading!

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    Helena Reply:

    It’s totally worth it. Promise.
    Helena recently posted..All this awesomeness in one place That CANT be healthy

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  33. Wow, I had no idea. Thank you so much for sharing this. I will have to implement this from now on.
    Michelle Saunderson recently posted..Christmas is Fast Approaching- Gotta Get My Christmas Mojo

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    Jean Reply:

    You are so welcome, Michelle. It was such a pleasure to find your blog today.

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  34. Thanks for the advice! If I insert a link or photo in my posts, I usually check the box to “open in a new window”. I hope I’m doing it right!
    Tammy recently posted..Happy Halloween

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    Jean Reply:

    You are doing it right!
    Thanks for stopping by, Tammy.
    Jean recently posted..4 Little Words Keep Readers From Straying

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  35. Do you use these four magical words?

    No, but I use a lot of four letter words.

    Actually, I may be a total tech-retard, but I was using this trick 4-5 years ago (back when I had a website). The last thing I want is to send readers away from my brilliant writing and I’m sure my readers felt the same way.

    Do you ever wander so far off the beaten path, you forget where you started?

    That reminds me of the time I almost appeared on an episode of Canada’s Worst Handyman. They were working on (aka destroying) a frat house a couple buildings down the street from my office. They were shooting the contestants walking down the street from a nearby bar. This bar was also featured in a Michael Moore movie, a movie that had an interview with one of my mom’s doctors.

    Now -uh- where was I again? Right. I was about to describe the time I looked up and saw Weird Al walking past my window…no, the threesome I had in the park in broad daylight…no, the time I caught J-Roc rubbing one out in his mom’s crib. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bEsMjd9a8rY

    No. That wasn’t it. Ah, fuck it.

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    Jean Reply:

    Sedate Me – I would have LOVED to have read your blog!
    Don’t know who J-Roc is, but he totally got busted. Hmmm… so which one are you? πŸ™‚

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    Sedate Me Reply:

    You wish you could have read my blog???

    Be careful what you wish for, Jean. For 99% of people, reading my old website would probably be about as enjoyable as visiting Auschwitz in its final days of operation while on a bad LSD trip.

    But a blog? Blogs are below me, my dear πŸ˜‰ I didn’t blog. I wrote an on-line compendium of intensely researched and brilliantly written articles on a wide variety of important topics. The articles averaged about 15,000 words in length, which is probably why I only posted about 3 of them a year.

    The profanity laden hatred, the threats of violence directed toward specific elected officials and the call for the complete destruction of the current Western way of life has probably earned me a reservation for a cell in a secret CIA torture prison right between Osama and the Wiki-leaks guy.

    The good/bad news is that I’m seriously considering re-starting my website.

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  36. I’m the good looking, intelligent, one.

    Actually, the clip is from possibly the most beloved Canadian TV in decades, The Trailer Park Boys. It was a zero-budget, largely improvised show that ran for 7 uncensored seasons on a basic cable channel. They’ve also done a few movies, nationally touring stage shows and are working on a new show The Drunk & On Drugs Happy Fun Time Hour.

    The premise of the show was that a camera crew was following around a bunch of low-lives living in the Sunnyvale Trailer Park and documented their various escapades.

    J-Roc is a secondary character. He’s Sunnyvale’s answer to Eminem and is the leader of the Roc-Pile. For much of the series, this “badass gangsta” lived in his mom’s trailer.

    Here’s a random sampling of J-Roc at work. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N68t7NvuTgQ

    In case you’re interested, every episode of The Trailer Park Boys is available here
    http://www.tpbcentral.com/eps.php?ep=s1e1p1
    and supposedly is on DirectTV’s 101 Network in the US.
    (The first couple episodes are largely about setting up the premise, but the series picks up from there.)

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  37. Yes, this happens and gets done to me all the time.

    I’ll go to a blog, get redirected, go there, and FORGET TO COMMENT on my original visit.
    happens quite often..

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    Jean Has Been Shopping Reply:

    Happened to me again today! Crazy.
    Jean Has Been Shopping recently posted..Monster Truck Mayhem

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  38. Good point! I had never thought about it but it is so true! Thanks for the advice!
    classycareergirl recently posted..Negotiation Tips For The Workplace Part 2

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    Jean Reply:

    You’re welcome, Classy Career Girl. I love your new design! Totally classy!

    [Reply]

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