Here at Yellow Duck we have been witness of hundreds, if not thousands, of short-lived trends in web design. For some, it is difficult to know when to jump on the bandwagon. Too early and it hasn’t caught on, too late and you won’t stand out. That’s why it is important to monitor the trends and only use those that are mature enough to prove their worth. This year, we are at the perfect time when it comes to video, with a lot of users asking the same question – “Why should I add video to my website?”. The short answer: Because it has become the best way to effectively engage people that can’t spare the time reading through pages and pages of content.
Some of the trends from past years, that are now the new normal are:
- Long vertical scrolling home pages, which Humphrey Munson very elegantly demonstrates.
- Super menus, like the one we created to fit Rainbow Chalk‘s extensive catalogue of products.
- Complex parallax effects and animations, like and full-screen landing pages and so much more;
With video, we are taking an unusually long time to realise that has already become a viable option for small and medium budgets.
Videos are currently being used on more and more websites and has proven to decrease the bounce rates by organically making users engage longer with your site.
But it seems that 2017, with Facebook’s pledge of making video a priority, is shaping to be the one in which we give it the attention it deserves.
I am not breaking new ground here, big companies and technology start-ups have long since made a priority to use video to reach those users that otherwise would skip through important parts of their site content and leave without producing a conversion.
Video for all budgets
While videos are seen as a very expensive way to get your message across, digital cameras and affordable video editing suites have made this type of content readily available for a fraction of the cost.
Even more so, with the appearance of services like Biteable (a user-friendly video maker service), alongside an increase in quality of stock graphics and video, you can become a video creator by generating a presentational video without leaving your computer screen. Now you can showcase the main selling points of your service or brand and do so with easy-to-use online tools.
This doesn’t replace professional videographers, graphic designer or editors, but allows those without the means to hire them to hit the ground running and don’t get behind. Any successful company will eventually need a more bespoke video to be created by professionals, and this services help small ventures with tight budgets to have a better opportunity from the start.
To the already obvious benefits of having videos on your website, we now have to add the increased visibility that social networks are giving to this type of content and the inherit ability to easily share it with friends and family, giving you the opportunity to go viral even if it is just in small niche circles.
I think we need to stop considering video in a corporate website a luxury and start treating it as a priority.
It needs to become a new way of communicating in an era when time is scarce and people want information that is easy to digest.
Paving the way
There are a lot of trend-setters already making a great example of how to be subtle but effective, here are a few:
– Airbnb uses autoplay videos of client testimonials to showcase how they are different.
– Altitude Risk Partners, one of our clients, hired Gareth Barton to help them communicate their brand with a highly creative quality video, which serves as the main channel to communicate their unique selling points.
– Framer, a prototyping online tool, uses the landing as a quick showcase that can engage the user and get potential designers to give it a try.
– What better way for Shutterstock to showcase their stock footage that to showcase the best examples on the landing page.
We need to move away from overusing old trends just because they are easy or familiar if you want to stand out against competitors. It is better to find new ways to express ourselves and add them to our online vocabulary. This way we can pick and choose from a bigger pool of ideas to ensure each message uses the right vehicle to get to the right audience.
Let’s start thinking on how video can elevate websites in a meaningful way, but be careful not to overload a site now that page speed has also become a top priority.