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The days of playing music on every page of your website are over. It was a cool feature when the internet was in its infancy, but these days it is laughable.

Let's look at it from the perspective of a brick and mortar business. There are certain things that those businesses must have going for them. When a customer visits their store or office, at the very least they strive to make them comfortable. Heating and Cooling are probably necessary, a clear path to the products they came to buy, and an easy way to purchase without a distraction that would cause them to leave.

Video Auto-Start is Stupid. Let your Customers Stick Around:

Let's say you were to walk into a restaurant to get a meal. You are already sold on their product or you wouldn't be there. 99% of people who walk into a restaurant are there to buy. But imagine they had music blasting so loudly that you knew instantly that you couldn't eat a meal while listening to that "noise." You would immediately walk back out the door.

Auto-Starting a video on your roofing website is much like the example above. I like to imagine a person sitting at their computer in the middle of the night researching which roofing company they are going to use for their next project. Three hours before, this person's teenage son was blasting music from this same computer, and when they land on your site a video begins blasting throughout the home, waking every member of the family. His instantaneous shock and strong need to make it stop caused him to hit the "back" button on his browser, sending him to the list of contractors he just searched for.

That person had walked in the door to shop. And you sent him back out the door just because you thought it would be a cool feature. Or worse, you thought that your customer would be so impressed by being spoon-fed massive amounts of information that they just had to love your company.

This also applies to people searching for a contractor at work, at the opera and even church. These customers deserve a chance to buy from you.

Green-screen Video is too Gimmicky:

Chroma-key or Green Screen video are videos where a person seems to walk out onto the webpage to give a sales pitch. This again is one of those things that people think would be great for their roofing website, but how often do you actually sit and listen to what people are saying on other sites with this feature? Personally, I will almost always hit my back button when I land on one of these sites. The only exception is when there is quick access to a button to make it stop. But most of the time the designer puts the video on every single page, so not only do I have to navigate the site, I also have to disarm the video landmines placed on each page. My reaction then is to hit my back button twice to leave the site and find another.

Does it Belong On A Roofing Website?

I believe that every roofing website should have video on it. Simply give the customer the option to watch it or not. And if someone is just there to get your phone number to call you about a free estimate, allow them to do so without hassle.

As with most things, going too far can be as bad as not going far enough. My suggestion is to find a middle ground, and if you don't know where that is, ask your friends and family for honest advice. But it may be best to ask another roofing contractor in another city. They will probably give you an honest assessment long before friends and family who will want to save your feelings.