If you want your website to engage a user’s attention, you need to make it enjoyable. Web users have notoriously short attention spans and you have your work cut out for you, if you want users to interact with your site and spend enough time to increase chances of conversions.
Some people are of the belief that when ‘fun’ is mentioned in website design, it means packing the website with silly designs and jokes a dozen; but that’s just silly. A website that’s fun to use isn’t something that is unprofessional. In fact, it attempts to interest the viewers in the information on it by creating memorable experiences for them.
So, let’s find out how you can go about designing ‘fun’ websites:
It’s About Making Ordinary Different
A boring company bio page can be turned into an interesting read, by giving it some much needed personality. Adding a dash of humor to the content that you have on the page and making sure that the images used enhance the humor on the page, will improve the ordinariness of the page and make it more readable. But, at the same time you must make sure that the usual designing basics like relevance, color, texture, background, placement etc. have been take care of.
At times, the theme that you choose for your website determines the fun quotient. If you actually want your website to be fun, choose a vibrant theme that can energize the viewer.
The Fun Element in 404 Pages
If there is one page that you can go the whole hog and dose the page with humor and that too loads of it, is the 404 error page. I am sure you must have seen plenty of amazingly designed error pages; remember no user likes coming across an error page, so a page that diffuses the frustration is a great idea here. Humor is one element you can infuse in the page, by way of an image or content; something else you can do is take responsibility for the fact that the user is shown an error page, and crack a joke at your expense. This usually works big time.
Make Fun Unobtrusive
Design for fun, but remember that not everybody appreciates a non-serious page. So, make it as unobtrusive as possible. Fun elements do prop up the engagement quotient, but at times, if not implemented correctly they act as barriers to the message the website needs to deliver.
A good way to go about things here is to make people want to use the fun elements if they want to do so? Give them a choice; do they want to go to an internal web page the usual route, or would they like to take the ‘story’ route that you have also provided to them. Bake some gems right into your website, something like an interesting fact or figure about your business domain, some interactive experience that offers detailed information, maybe a video or two ; the options as can be seen are immense if you don’t want the ‘fun’ side of your website to not interfere with the overall features and functionalities of the website.
How Much is too Much?
You must know when to stop making the website “funny”. Not going overboard with the fun elements is part of the fun. You don’t want to be using too many elements that just go on to frustrate users. By filling your website with fun interactions and even images, you will be adding a dash of fun to your website, but keep an eye out for usability and website efficiency.
Sometimes, a user will just get tired of going through all the images, Flash animation, illustrations that you have on your website; and having spent enough time on it, they will just move on to some other site; and all the time they were on your site, they actually didn’t find any information worth their while.
That is something you need to avoid.
Fun for Enhancing Message
Don’t forget the purpose of your website. It’s there to provide information to your target customers; it’s also there to enhance your brand and market your products and services. This message shouldn’t get lost, and a successful website ensures that this message is presented in a memorable manner.
For this to happen, your website’s images and the textual content must work in sync with one another; something else that you mustn’t forget is the navigation of the site. It needs to be simple and easy-to-use. Every ‘fun’ element that you use on the site must just have one purpose – ensure that the website’s message is projected effectively and users don’t forget this message in a hurry.
Designing your website in a way such that it gets its message across in an enjoyable manner is one of surest ways of achieving website success. But, such designs don’t come easy; you need to work towards getting your design elements just right to ensure that the overall design comes across as fun and interesting.