Storytelling in Website Design - A Guide

Storytelling in Website Design: Why your Website needs a story

These days, everyone has a story.

But did you know that you also have a great story to tell, through your website design? Even if you don’t know what that story is yet, it will play a vital part in making your website design unique and captivating to visitors, and here’s why.

Here’s why your website design needs a story:

Often, your website is the first place people go when they want to find out more about you. So the story your website design tells will influence how they view you. About what you’ve achieved, how you achieved it, and why you do what you do.

Immerse someone in a good story, and they’ll stick around longer, feel an emotional attachment, and maybe even buy your product. In these days of standard website design, with pages that read like resumes, a well-told and inspiring story can really make you stand out. Even if your website is just there to sell paper clips, you need to find a way of channelling the obsession and passion you have for your product into something your website visitors can get behind – and that means finding your story.

We’ll teach you how to draw people into your website’s story, and make you stick in your visitor’s minds for all the right reasons.

In our next part, we’ll help you figure out how to find your unique story.

Storytelling in Website Design: Find your story

When you’re considering website design options, think of yourself as a superhero. Because just like a superhero, you have an origin story.

You came from somewhere, and at some point found the need to create a website. With the right spin, how you reached that point can be made into an inspiring and engaging story that will really make your website come alive.

I know what you’re thinking.

I’m a business, why does my website design need a story?

You don’t need a story, you already have a story. And the telling of that story is how you will enable website visitors to easily get to know you, and understand why you matter.

So, before we get down to the actual act of website design, let’s try and figure out what your story is.

Spider-man was bitten by a radioactive spider, what bit you?

Go on. Ask yourself a few questions:

  • What made you start your business?
  • Who was there at the start?
  • Who joined along the way?
  • What was your first product or service?
  • How does your business make life easier for your customers?
  • Who are your customers?
  • What is your next step?

Somewhere in here is the start of your story. Can you see it yet?

Looking for a hero

Maybe you don’t wear iron armour. Or a Batsuit. Maybe you do. Maybe you dress like Wonder Woman. That’s fine. We don’t judge here at Logic Design. But every story needs a star, and yours is no different.

This is the crucial bit though: your website is the star of the story.

Your story isn’t about you. It’s about your customers, and what they get from your product or service. You’re in the story, sure. But you’re a bit part. You’re Alfred the butler, if anything.

Those website visitors will find a story much more engaging if they can identify with the character in the story, and that means you need to understand who will be visiting your website.

  • Who are your customers?
  • What draws them to your products or services?
  • What traits, if any, do your customers share?

Somewhere amongst the answers to these questions you will find the character or characters for your story.

The website strikes back

Are you starting to get an idea of what story your website design will tell? Even if you don’t yet, we understand how to get your story told here at Logic Design. And in the next part, we’ll be showing you how a website design can tell an engaging story using content, pictures, graphic design and much more.

Read the next part for hints on telling your story.

Storytelling in Website Design: Telling your Story

At Logic Design, we say keep your blockbuster movies and bestselling memoirs, because creative website design is the best way to tell a story. And we’d say that to Quentin Tarantino’s or Martin Scorsese’s face.

After reading the above, you might already have an idea about the story you want your website design to tell. Today we’ll show you some of the ways you can bring that story to life.

How to bring your website’s story to life

Find your Fail Whale

Children like mascots, and deep down, we bet you do too. A mascot can narrate your story, or be a much needed injection of character. Finding yourself a mascot could be the secret weapon that brings your website to life, not to mention giving you a memorable character.

Twitter’s Fail Whale is a good example of a modern day mascot. Have you ever seen the whale? If you have, that means Twitter isn’t working properly. But somehow, the whale makes it okay. The whale soothes your frustration at not being able to read Kanye West’s latest diatribe.

Is your website design missing that not so human touch? We can help you find your mascot.

An image is worth a thousand page clicks

“Show, don’t tell,” said the generic creative writing tutor at your local adult learning centre. Well, they’ve got a point. And on a website you can take that advice literally by using pictures more than words.

Images are the basic building blocks for a website design that tells, or should we say shows, a story. So use them!

The parallax view

Parallax scrolling uses various layers of design on a page. Each layer responds differently, depending on the scrolling behaviour of your website visitor. This a relatively new technique, first used on a Nike website in 2011.

The real value of using parallax scrolling, in our view, is that it puts your website visitors in charge. It makes them feel like they’re in their very own ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ novel, only they don’t have to turn to the right page, the website simply slides them along.

Parallax is immersive, engaging and a great technique to use for a storytelling website design. But there’s still one more thing your storytelling website needs to really shine.

The final, secret ingredient…

This is the bit where I remove my sunglasses and point my finger directly at you. Yes, the most important piece in the website design puzzle is you. You there, reading this. All these nifty tricks and techniques we’ve been talking about, they’re really just fancy ways to help your website visitors connect with you, and your unique story. If those visitors can get a sense of your authenticity, they’re going to buy into everything you say, sell and offer.

And in the final part, we’ll show you how to bring the whole package together to achieve that sense of authenticity.

Storytelling in Website Design: Why your story matters

In previous parts, we’ve told you about storytelling, we’ve even told you what your story should be about, but we saved the really important stuff until last.

So today we’re going to tell you why your story matters, and what benefits a storytelling website design has for you.

Stories give you purpose

Ever yawned your way through a generic website design? Snored through stock shots of supposedly satisfied customers? Woke up with the spacebar imprinted on your forehead whilst reading boilerplate introduction prose that reads like a CV?

That will never happen to you, because your storytelling is the framework around which all those website design decisions are based. Every image belongs there, because it has a purpose. Every animation and piece of writing on your website design is helping tell your story. In short, your website has focus, and things with focus are never boring.

To know you is to trust you

Not everybody who has a story to tell should be trusted, to be sure. On the other hand, it can be difficult to trust a stranger, particularly in business. So make your website design is warm and friendly, and by the time your visitor has caught up with your skilfully told story, you won’t be a stranger to them.

Stories make you sticky, in a good way

Our brains like stories. They find stories easier to remember than lists of information. Which is why I have a stock story about a bacon monster that lays eggs and needs to drink milk. Sometimes the monster drinks brandy instead. Either way, this story helps me remember which life sustaining items I need to buy when I visit the local shop.

Whatever facts and achievements you want the world to know about will have more chance of staying in your visitor’s minds if they’re wrapped up in a story. So think of story as the glue that sticks your website design firmly in people’s minds.

Nobody else can tell your story

And nobody else will. Not like you do. And here’s the best thing; website design is a sophisticated art, capable of making a website whatever you want it to be. These days, that’s almost anything. It’s one of the best mediums around to tell your story. So stop reading our stuff, it’s time to create your own.

Haven’t told your story yet? Maybe now is the time to do so. Get in touch with our website design team on 01284 706842 or email hello@logicdesign.co.uk and we’ll help you tell your story through the medium of website design.

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