by Libby Millar.
Storytelling in marketing gives us the ability to connect events and draw a narrative. Our ability to tell a story is what engages audiences. We constantly see stories about businesses on social media, in online reviews and on ‘About Us’ pages of websites. With all these touchpoints comprised of imagery and words within and across platforms, a customer is taken on a journey. But beyond two dimensions, on websites, we have an array of tools to create even more convincing stories. When we apply storytelling to web design, the customer journey becomes epic.
Here are the tools that you have to tell a story through web design and create a compelling business message.
What Is Storytelling In Web Design?
When we think of stories, we think of narratives comprised of words and pictures. However, storytelling is achieved not only through words and imagery but colour, typography and user experience.
Consider how colour in movies can tell us the time of day and set a mood for the story. Visual elements go far beyond words to create a narrative. The way that letters are arranged – Typography elicits certain emotions. For example, a STOP sign when driving around Geelong can bring on a sense of alertness. The mind looks at visuals to work out logical and connecting patterns. A pattern, linear or non-linear, is the narrative that creates a story.
In web design, how you use the tools that you have and how you draw together all of the elements of a website creates a story.
Why Storytelling Matters In Web Design
Storytelling has the ability to reach new heights in web design because of a hyper-digital environment. Design principles are expanded beyond two dimensions through animation, website functionality (transitions and highlights), and embedded elements. Think beyond marketing activities for storytelling opportunities. The biggest opportunity is your website.
Storytelling Tools For Web Design
Your website content doesn’t need to be presented with a beginning, middle and end like a storybook. However, your website content needs to make sense to your audience and your storytelling elements need to create a clear narrative. On a website, there are many tools at hand to achieve this: colour, typography, user experience design, swiping, scrolling or pop-ups. Apply visual elements such as contrasting light, colour schemes, shapes, space, texture and animation, functionality and emotion.
Colour and Imagery
Colour has deep meaning and associations for people. Blue means cold and orange warmth. Red means danger and blue is calm. Intentional use of colour that represents a brand assists with the visual aspect of storytelling. Colour used in backgrounds, images and videos, illustrations and infographics should all be intentional, logical and connected.
Font style, appearance and structure create mood and help to convey specific messages. Text can look fun, scary, bold or conservative. Think about how you can use text to represent your brand and your message.
User experience design tells a story that you don’t see, but experience. Carefully considering the flow of a website from a landing page to a deeper dive into a business defines a pathway for how a customer journeys through a website and therefore their experience.
Clicking a button to see that it changes colour can help users navigate and understand their interactions on a website. Such interactions can make experiences more immersive, clear and engaging for users.
Storytelling is how we understand each other, and how we remember information and associate meaning. Web design is a story told through words, colour, imagery, typography, user experience design and micro-interactions. Told well, websites make for the ultimate brand story.
If the design of your website is outdated you can check out Pixeld’s post on 6 Reasons to Give Your Website a Makeover.
To take your customers on an epic journey and see more website conversions, get in touch with Pixeld today.
With thanks to our guest writer:
This article was written by Libby Millar, Digital Content Specialist at Pixeld.
Pixeld is a web design and digital marketing agency that creates bespoke websites, content and campaigns that focus on customer needs. Pixeld is also the Geelong Chamber’s Platinum Partner.