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WunderLand: Three Ways to Use Motion UI to Engage Your Website Visitors

You will probably check your phone, email and social media channels at least once before you reach the end of this blog post.

At least that’s what a growing body of research suggests. While researchers debate exactly how to measure our concentration, one thing seems clear: the increasingly digitized world is taking a toll on our ability to focus. On average, Americans check our phones 80 times a day, often from the second we wake up until we go to sleep. At the same time, some experts estimate that we are exposed to as many as 5,000 ads per day - up from about 500 in the ‘70s.

At a time when it’s possible to listen to a podcast, shop online and scroll through social media channels all while waiting for an Uber, it’s more important than ever before to find new ways to engage visitors on your website. 

So how can you cut through the clutter and ensure visitors stay and (hopefully) take action on your company’s website? Enter Motion UI: a trend that is quickly becoming a key ingredient to online engagement.

The next big emerging trend

As Maya Angelou once said, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” At its core, that’s what Motion UI is all about: helping visitors immerse themselves in the experience of your product or service through their computer, tablet or smartphone. 

At a more granular level, Motion UI is the practice of combining animation and visual design to communicate with and create a dynamic experience for your end user. It’s not just about making your site look pretty or getting things to bounce on the screen. It requires serious consideration and strategy at an early and deep level. Just like so many other marketing tactics, success with Motion UI is dependent on our ability to leverage it to tell a compelling story. 

As you plan for 2020 and beyond, here are three ways you can use Motion UI to engage website visitors and, in turn, foster meaningful relationships between them and your brand, product or service.

Tell your story: Use Motion UI to drive your brand identity.

If you’re considering incorporating Motion UI into your website, the best place to start is by taking a step back and considering what story you want to tell. Consider the classic adage, “show me, don’t tell me,” and then think through what elements of your site - even if they are small elements - you could enhance through motion to elicit the heart of your brand.

Apple’s “App of the Year,” Calm, evokes a sense of peacefulness on its site by inviting visitors to “take a deep breath” as they watch soft dots gently circle across the screen. This micro-interaction is a great example of how you can use motion in a thoughtful way to tell your brand’s story and help consumers experience it on your site. This simple element takes an otherwise boring moment and turns it into a meaningful and restorative one for the end user who, presumably, is turning to the meditation app for just that. It’s a great example of how Motion UI can deliver value to the consumer before they’ve even started experiencing the product itself.

By giving website visitors a positive, memorable experience, you can help them begin to form a deeper connection with your brand and fall in love with your product. And once you establish brand loyalty, you won’t have to worry so much about pop up ads distracting them from your website, as they won’t want to leave.

Guide users toward action: Help visitors on their journey.

For many of us, America Online (AOL) was our first experience using the internet. If you were online in the ‘90s, you’ll remember the sometimes-frustrating-but-encouraging AOL login screen that featured a figure that transitioned during each stage of the login process. This was one of the first - and now, iconic - animations designed to guide users on their online journey.

Today’s animations achieve the same goal and are arguably even more important as companies vie for the attention of consumers who are often looking at more than one device at once, or strive to engage them in a complicated task. Duolingo, the popular language-learning platform and the most downloaded education app in the world, does this well. Learning a language is challenging. Upon visiting Duolingo’s website and opening the app for the first time, users are greeted by a friendly mascot and bright, colorful, simple animations that encourage them to choose a path forward. Another great example is Google Translate, which uses motion to highlight one piece of information at a time without overwhelming the user. 

When a consumer is doing something complex, like learning or translating a language, it’s human nature for them to lose focus. By helping them answer the question, ‘what do I do next,’ through visual feedback, you’re helping them take action.

Delight your stakeholders: Keep it simple and have fun!

Although studies show that you have only a few seconds to engage a visitor on your site, our guess is that you have even less time when your target audience is busy millennial moms. 

Leader Bag Co. must have recognized this when it designed its whimsical and easy-to-navigate ecommerce site. By combining simple, colorful imagery with parallax scrolling, it communicates the company’s values of peace and love while making it easy to zoom in on high-resolution product images and quickly add them to your cart. By inspiring moms to “wear parenthood proudly” through its messaging and design, it has taken a product that is often anything but pleasurable and clean - diaper bags - and made them a real pleasure to purchase.

Remember that a little bit can go a long way, and there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. It’s important not to go overboard. But when used sparingly and thoughtfully, Motion UI can be incredibly beneficial and help your website rise above the noise we all encounter in this increasingly integrated and digital world.

Do you have the right team of designers in place to help you ditch your static interface and create one that brings your brand to life on your website? WunderLand can help. REACH OUT to learn how.

For more information on Motion UI, CONTACT WUNDERLAND GROUP today.