A Line out the Door and What it Means for Your Website

Why do you think one breakfast place has a line out the door, while close by, another breakfast place is nearly empty?

It can’t be the relative quality of the waffles.

It probably has nothing to do with the food.

Why is there a line out the door at Intelligentsia, an upscale coffee place, and an even longer line at Philz, another coffee place, but you can almost always walk right in at The Refinery and get an espresso? (There are a lot of coffee places around here.)

It has little to do with the coffee.

It’s all about social proof.

People see a crowded place and want to go there. Then it becomes too crowded to go.

Obligatory Yogi Berra cite here: ‘That restaurant is so crowded, nobody goes there anymore,’ he supposedly said.

There’s a school of design thought that dictates success is yours only when you have a messy, crowded website design. Look at home pages of The Huffington Post or BuzzFeed and you might get dizzy. Like the New York Times site, these are newspaper sites …

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