Mailto: links are terrible. You know the ones that open your desktop email client and fill in the email for you so you can ‘contact’ whatever site has this terrible usability.
Let me back track a bit, some
mailto: links are terrible. The ones that really get my hate on are not the ones that are around an email (that makes sense) but the ones that are around text like ‘contact us’.
First the fact that ‘contact us’ text opens my desktop email client is not really all that clear. Second how do you know I even use desktop email? Most users are using something like gmail, hotmail, yahoo, and probably don’t even have a desktop email client.
So with your stupid
mailto: link you’re suddenly making your user scramble to figure out what the hell is happening as some random program they’ve maybe never even seen opens. Sure they figure it out eventually but I know I just give up and don’t bother getting in touch with your company.
If you’re using a
mailto: link for contact at least make it be around the email that you’re sending to and make it look like a link from the rest of your site.
A proper contact page should include and email to contact along with a form and a phone number. Let the user decide how they want to contact you. Don’t enforce your terrible design/usability ideas on them.
This rant was inspired by this otherwise beautiful site. Look in the footer for the link that got my rant on.