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What would be an optimal amount of time to show an interstitial before it closes automatically? Bearing in mind both the information is succesfully conveyed and the frustration of the user is minimized.

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  • .2 - .8 seconds :) Dec 15, 2011 at 14:36
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    Can you give us a specific example of the context where you're showing an interestitial message? If you can post a screenshot and/or the text of the message itself, that would be ideal. (There might be good general-purpose guidelines, but I'm hoping to head off answers that start "It depends..." and rhyme with "tl;dr." ;-)) Dec 15, 2011 at 14:48
  • I assume whether or not the interstitial should time out at all isn't something to be considered? For example, if the message is "you are leaving xyz.com" then you may want to wait until the user gives the manual OK, especially if secure data is being transferred.
    – Evan
    Dec 16, 2011 at 18:05
  • @Evan thanks for the insight. We already ruled that out, but it is something to bear in mind. Dec 18, 2011 at 23:58

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As shorter time as it takes for the information you're displaying on the page to be consumed - an image with a simple message? 5 seconds. Two paragraphs? 3 minutes.

A very subjective question, which only you can answer.

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