Website animations, though not used by all, are one of the key elements of an effective website. Often, they bring highlights to texts, images, navigation tabs, and more. But these aren’t their only purpose. Proweaver breaks down the impact of this particular element not only on your web platform but also on your branding as a whole.
Have you gone through a website that feels static and unmoving? Chances are you don’t feel interested to know more about its content or products. And when you don’t feel interested, you click away. Here is where web animations come to play.
Web animations are the subtle or extravagant use of website elements to create two-dimensional effects or actions. It can be as simple as a moving loading bar or as attention-grabbing as a sliding header or a page transition. Oftentimes, web developers combine animation styles for a more profound effect.
Website Animations on Customer Retention
With the ever-significant role of webmasters to improve user experience, web animations have come a long way in proving their impact on this purpose. Visual design elements, in general, are known to influence user impressions. In fact, a resounding 94% of users formulate their impressions based on website design. This is why audios, videos, and images remain a continuous trend for websites since their use. Though they aren’t as popular, animations fit right into that category as well.
From that statistic alone, we concur that content by itself is not enough for businesses to target their audience. Much of their website planning should include what visual elements to use on their platform and how frequently.
After all, a high user experience rate guarantees improved consumer retention. The more people feel engaged and interested in your website content, the more you gain new and loyal followers. So, as early as possible, it’s best to know how you can make a good impression through the visual elements available.
The Step Further
So, you’ve gathered the images and videos to use for your website. What now?
Take it a step further with animations. Animations are the best way to start your deep dive into visual design. While images, audios, and videos give you the edge you need to make a good first impression, animations make it so these impressions stick.
The question then becomes, “how do animations benefit my website and business?”
While known for improving aesthetics, web animations bring more than that to the table. Here are the other benefits that animations give to your business website explained through the acronym IMPACT:
Animations don’t just make your business website unique; they make you stand out from the rest of your competitors. Effective use of your animation tools can shine a light on your brand, advocacy, or any feature you’d like given attention to. This ultimately allows you to be separated from other companies, impression-wise. The next time a user views your website, it becomes easier to recognize you through subtle animation tactics.
Moreover, custom web animations help you figure out your identity. Whether it’s a product you’d like to endorse or a movement you’d like everyone to join in, your animations allow you to explore what makes up your branding.
Use bold, striking animations for your welcome page if your company is going for a strong representation. If you’d like your business to be known for its laid-back persona, experiment with subtle entrance and exit animations. A moving logo is also an ideal complex choice for brand introductions and messaging.
Web animations are ideal tools that support motion or movement, like when a user moves from one webpage to another. Users want to feel immersed. With a transitional effect, your website can be the platform they are looking for to feel just that. Movement in your website also keeps your content interesting and fresh. This leads to positive user feedback that gets you more leads and conversion rates.
Use scrolling animation effects to emphasize movement along with your web page. This makes for a fun exploration that your users may thank you for.
Nobody wants to be stuck in a boring loading section of the web page. Animations are handy in keeping your users distracted from slow loading speeds and making them feel rewarded after. At the same time, it gives the illusion of a short waiting time and keeps your users engaged while your website information processes itself on its display.
It’s inevitable to experience technical slowing difficulties. To combat this, compromise with a well-rounded website animation trick.
Simple loading bars with percentage numbers can be your best friend. However, be sure not to overwhelm your users with a lot happening at once. Stick to a color palette that goes well with the one presented on your web pages and go with a simple bar that clearly demonstrates progression.
Nobody wants to go through a website for ages looking for a specific product or concept. Similarly, nobody wants to be bogged down by too much important information squeezed into a single page. To remedy this, website developers use animations to draw attention to things that need emphasis. This not only saves users precious time from scouring through the entire site but also gives businesses the desired action they want their users to take. This also guarantees better indexing for search engines.
Make use of hover effects on desktop website platforms. Depending on your use, these effects put weight on clickable links to help users navigate your site. If you’d like, add a special icon or symbol, like a brand animal, to give it a more unique touch.
Chain of Command
Animations also serve as an instrument to help web developers and webmasters create a structured system for their client’s benefit. As a matter of fact, web animations promote visual hierarchy to guide users on what comes next after they’ve performed a certain action or completed a task. As fluidity is one of the principles of animations, these elements simplify or break down complex information into bite-sized pieces. Thus, aiding in information retention, which eventually gives way to credibility and loyalty.
Present your ideas like a tree. Start with the roots—main concepts—and branch them off to smaller ideas or content. If you have a scrolling website, use entrance animations to gradually reveal smaller and more detailed information. Or utilize the zoom effect to help your users discover deeper about a topic with appealing results.
Emotional impact is probably one of the highest reasons why websites have animations. As a medium for your business, websites have the ability to immerse your users in a one-of-a-kind journey. This should be the goal you are setting for your business to help you reach your professional objectives.
Animations provide a direct emotional translation to your clients, conveying a message that affects how they see you. What’s even more impressive about this is that the translation may be different for everyone, depending on their unique set of determinants. These determinants include culture, race, gender, age, religion, political beliefs, and more.
Try your hand with interactive animation storytelling. If you opt for sliding entrance animations, make your text stand out by moving it with the transition. If you’d like to add icons and symbols, keep them relevant to the theme and content. Most importantly, ensure a steady flow of content from one to another. Otherwise, it wouldn’t serve to tell its story, right?
Despite the numerous benefits of web animations, they can also bring your website’s downfall if not used effectively. For one, it could send your users into content overload. This happens when your website inserts too many graphics and transitions, making the whole composition look muddled and dry. What’s more, you do not give your users the satisfaction they are looking for. Instead, you drive them away from your website’s purpose and waste their time—and yours.
Another disadvantage of ineffective web animations is the heavy burden it places on your loading speed. Too much animation slows down your web pages, and this frustrates your users. Without even thinking about it, they’ve already settled their interests on another website and you’ve lost a potential customer/partner.
Therefore, one of your biggest web development priorities should be to find a web animation equilibrium. But how?
You know what your brand is, and you already have some ideas on what animations to use. The problem is there’s too much to choose from! You may even be tempted to use multiple of them at once. However, this is not the right way to go.
If you’re unsure about your web animation choices, we have outlined a few useful tips to help you narrow your options and find the most suitable ones to complete your animation equilibrium.
Highlight key points.
Before even choosing what animations to use, figure out what elements of your website you want to be emphasized. These should be the sections of your web page that you would want your users to see first. Key points range from no-brainers like titles, quotes, and slogans to understated elements like team content and service/product specialties.
Note: Make sure to only include at least three to five key points on your web page. Otherwise, separate them into other pages. Now, use your animations to draw your users’ attention to them. These animations could come in the form of entrance, cursor, and hover effects, to cite a few. No matter which you decide, remember to also be consistent with what you use for your entire website. This makes information more digestible and navigation much easier.
Experiment with aesthetics.
The more specific your website theme is, the better it is for your brand. This also extends to your web animations.
Don’t be afraid to mix and match your animation effects to come up with a personalized aesthetic. To keep it interesting, use complementary or contrasting elements, like colors, effects, and font dynamics. You can also combine hand-drawn styles with generic ones. This brings a new flavor to your website and engages your users more.
Make it mobile-friendly.
Animations for your desktop website version can and should be different from your mobile UI animations. This is because a mobile website experience has its limitations.
Hover effects, for example, cannot be used in mobile-version animations simply because the mobile device doesn’t have a cursor. Large animations that look great on a desktop screen may lose their essence when observed from a phone. Your website mobile version may even cut off your effects to half to accommodate the platform’s visual scale.
So, consider your mobile compatibility when incorporating your web animations in place.
Utilize custom timing and loading features.
Staging the perfect timing means all the difference. Don’t just rely on a high loading speed to get you the results you need.
According to Val Head, a good loading range for interface animations is 200ms to 500ms seconds. But this isn’t the only factor to consider when setting up your custom timing features.
How you want your content to appear matters, as well as the rate at which it arrives. If you want a snappy arrival, time it accordingly. However, if your animations require a little bit of time for your users to get used to, use an “ease-in” or a gradual to fast entrance or vice versa.
Sound is optional, not necessary.
Adding sound effects to your web animations is not a do-or-die tip. In fact, sometimes, your web animations are better off without a sound. This holds especially true for web pages that have sound-based media content, like videos or audios. In this way, you do not overstimulate your users’ senses.
Keep your users at the edge of their seats by practicing the art of anticipation. There are a lot of animation design styles that specialize in this, but we highly suggest the skeleton loader effect. What this effect does is show your user a blank screen with designated placements at first click, then a gradual ease of content as it finishes loading or when your user scrolls down.
One of the advantages of this animation feature is its semblance of decreased waiting time. Unlike the blank screen or spinner effect, the skeleton loader gives your users something to look forward to, like a set of images or icons. It also reduces uncertainty without eliminating suspense.
Know your trends.
Stepping up your website design and animation entails a lot of research and application. Web animation trends are ever-changing, and staying in the loop allows you to meet your creativity and the industry’s needs halfway.
Some of the most anticipated web animation trends in 2022 include animated logos, 3D animations, and liquid motion. Be sure to check these out on your next web animation project.
Actions—and feedback—come last.
Ever wondered why call-to-actions almost always stay at the bottom of the page? Excluding header tabs and pop-ups, effective CTAs come last to make it convenient for your users to act upon the call. They also serve as a conclusion to the content right above. For users who skim, going to the bottom of the page to find out what happens next is almost second nature. So, it’s only beneficial that if you have web animations focused on your CTA, they should be placed last.
This goes the same way for feedback. Reward your users with an interactive feedback animation after they’ve completed an action. Not only does it clear things up, but it also confirms your users’ actions and triggers them to make more.
Examine your user’s expectations.
Determine your target audience’s expectations. You don’t want to force web animations on them that don’t fit their taste or preferences. That will only drive them away from your website and seek your competitors.
If you have a mostly-children audience, you can get away with colorful and exaggerated animations. On the other hand, if you cater to adults, go for minimalistic and professional-looking animation effects. Furthermore, consider your business niche. Certain business industries may have specific criteria for web design, including animations and effects.
Another factor to examine is accessibility, especially for users with visual triggers and disabilities. The best way to go around this is by having a feature that enables your users to hide or stop your web animations. Also, limit your animation loops to prevent disorientation and unnecessary repetition.
Keep it to moderation.
And this is a rule, not a tip! As said above, too many web animations result in content overload, and you don’t want that to happen. Look at the bigger picture. Examine the entirety of your web pages, then, the minute details. Remove unnecessary animations and configure usable ones to simplify layouts and designs.
This works wonders for your user experience and loading speed.
The Key Takeaways
Web animations beautify your website, ease transition, encourage user engagement, and create emotional impact. Furthermore, just like any other website element, web animations affect user impressions, conversion rates, search engine optimization, and other website metrics that dictate your business’ success. Thus, we encourage website owners to come up with well-thought animations that improve their branding.
Have you figured out how you can utilize web animations for your business venture? If you still haven’t, there’s no need to worry! Proweaver can help maximize your customization goals with a website that’s built according to your preferences.
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