If you were around during the early days of the internet, you know what bad web design is. Gaudy banners, neon-colored text, flashing ads, and flat navigation hierarchies, you name it – we’ve seen some terrible trends come and go. However, like all previous generations, it’s easy to fall into the trap and think we have it all figured out when in truth, we’re busy falling behind.
If you already have a modern, attractive, and professional-looking website with all the basic functionality you need, you might think you’re set for life. However, the standards are continuously being raised by internet users and other competitors, meaning we have to evolve to keep up.
Interactive web development can help us stay ahead of the curve by bringing unique experiences to users – driving engagement, maximizing exposure, and converting more customers.
Need some more convincing? Let’s see why you should build an interactive website:
Be More Unique = Be More Memorable
The one downside of the open publication revolution we are experiencing is that it’s easier than ever to create acceptably attractive, modern, and usable websites. Nearly two-thirds of all websites use a CMS, like WordPress. Most CMSs allow users to import professionally designed templates to customize and tweak using powerful and intuitive page builders.
This means many individuals or small businesses don’t even need to hire a professional designer to have a site that’s “good enough.” To make matters worse, standing out on the web has never been harder, with over 1 billion websites to compete with.
As a result, you need to go the extra mile if you want your website to stand out. One way to do that is to build interactive experiences on your website. Even if you have similar branding or designs as some of your competitors, you will distinguish yourself further by offering experiences they don’t.
If a potential buyer has been browsing several sites for products or services, this will make them immediately spot something different about yours. The next time they go online, your website will also be the first that jumps to mind.
Create Experiences Tailored to How You Do Business
Another solid reason to invest in an interactive website is that your business model doesn’t fit the cookie-cutter dimensions of a typical static site. We get it, businesses today can be complex with a wide-ranging catalog of products, services, and a multidimensional organizational structure.
One example is when it comes to procuring medicinal products on an enterprise scale. Usually, purchases are made after an intense process of vetting, consultation, and negotiation. If you operate in this space, trying to make your products available through a typical e-commerce experience where you add products to a checkout cart doesn’t align with how you do business.
With an interactive website, you can create unique and complex user journeys that will lead to higher conversion rates by aligning with how you operate.
For highly specialized products and services, you may also want to present them in a more intuitive way that provides more information. One typical example today is car websites that let you swivel around a 3D model of the vehicle to see it from all angles, inside and out. Not only does it satisfy buyers for whom the looks of a car are essential, but it also provides practical information on the size, layout, and possible exterior/interior features.
Building on the previous point, many businesses with a lot of information convey the struggle to find ways to present it to visitors thoughtfully. For example, a research institute may have to provide a tone of information on their facilities, projects, staff, initiatives, funding, etc. This can often be awkward to do using a standard top-down hierarchy or blog-style publication.
Visitors can be put off by having to browse through many categories and go through multiple layers to find the piece of information they want. However, with an interactive design, you can present information more naturally with relationships that encourage exploring.
For example, this website by CooperSurgical presents itself as the actual inside of a medical facility. Visitor’s eyes are naturally drawn to different elements, such as labs, education centers, helpdesk, etc. When you click on an item, it “zooms” in on it and reveals more related information. You can see how this almost entices you to click on a category and explore it further.
You can even guide users to certain pieces of information or specific products and services based on their input and previous actions. Add in a touch of personalization, and you have a recipe for success.
So, not only will this help solve the issue of presenting and breaking down a lot of information, but it will encourage visitors to browse and find what they are looking for. It also allows you to build a stronger connection with your visitors and possibly improve your chances of converting them down the line.
Who knows? You Might Just Get Free Marketing
Another possible benefit of a highly interactive website is that you will improve your chances of getting more exposure. We already know that media like images, video, infographics, etc., make visitors far more likely to share your content on social media and other platforms.
The same goes for highly interactive pages that are unique and fun to use. If you can craft these experiences, people will naturally want to share them with others – giving you free marketing.
You don’t necessarily have to go “viral.” Imagine operating in any professional field, and an impressed visitor shares it out of interest with their social/professional groups on Facebook, Linked In, etc.? This is highly targeted exposure that could be great for conversions down the line and build important social proof.
Improve Your Metrics – Beat the Bounce
The math is simple. Interactive and media-rich websites = more engaged users, more involved users = visitors are spending more time on your website, more time on your website = lower bounce rates.
Aside from the obvious, another reason why you want to keep visitors on your site for longer is because it could improve your SEO (search engine optimization) rankings. Search engines like Google collect many data points to try and identify the best websites to recommend to users.
If your website has high bounce rates (i.e., people leave the website soon after navigating to it), it tells Google that people either:
- Don’t enjoy using your website, or
- They didn’t find what they were looking for
On the other hand, low bounce rates (i.e., people spend longer on your website before leaving) tells Google the opposite.
Interactivity can engage users as nothing else can and encourage them to stay on your website longer with exciting and enjoyable experiences.
An interactive website can help launch your online presence forward and help you do more effective business online. If you want a differentiator to get the competitive edge, it might be just what you need. As a forward-looking web development service in Toronto, we always look for opportunities to help you get the most value out of your business.