6 Digital Marketing & Web Design Mistakes Small Business Owners Make
Posted April 16, 2017 by Anthony Neal Macri

Remember the days when not every business had a website? Sometimes you Googled a business and discovered that they only existed on yellow pages?

Times have changed. Every single business, small or large, has or desperately needs to have a website.

As a small business owner, you must accept that your website is a vital piece of marketing and branding for your business. Visitors are coming to your website for a specific reason, and you want to ensure that you answer their questions and use your website to sell your product or service.

Your website will make an impression on your potential customers before they will even consider buying anything from you. You might not even have a chance to talk to them, the website should be your best foot forward in making that lasting impression.

Web design, at its essence, is a form of art. And like art, it should give your visitors an experience. It’s meant to combine form and function in a way that makes a website enjoyable, navigable, interesting and usable. In order to do this, there are certain “rules” that must be followed when building your online business presence. Often, small businesses don’t follow these rules, and that’s when website disasters like this happen.

From personal experience, I can say that these are the most common mistakes small business owners often make:

1.Rushing to the finish line

I get it. As a small business owner you have to juggle a million different things. Your online presence is just another one of those things. You just want to get it done.

The problem with that is, you are rushing to the finish line with a bunch of important missing pieces. I have seen many business owners get to the design of their business website before even having researched who their target market is, or who their perfect customer is.

If your target market is older, perhaps the font size should be larger. Or if your product is geared towards a younger audience, then you need to think about mobile experience more, since younger generations are mobile and more social. These are just some examples.

The most important question you must be able to answer before starting to design is: Where do you want your visitors to go once they land on your website? What action do you want them to take? Both answers are easy if you know your target audience.

2.A Terrible CTA (call to action)

As I mentioned above, you must 100% know what exactly you want your customers to do on your website. Once you know, work with a designer to make that process as easy as possible. Every other feature and piece of information on the website becomes secondary.

Your CTA is the gateway to your business. It tells your potential customers to do something: Buy this! Get a coupon! Learn more about this service! Obviously, remember it’s extremely important that your CTA clearly tells visitors what they need to do but also explains exactly what will happen when the CTA is clicked. There is nothing worse than clicking on a CTA and ending up on the wrong page.

Remember! Keep the amount of CTAs on check. There is a fine line between helpful and super annoying and confusing. Check out for example this disaster:

3. The Use Of Ugly Or Irrelevant Images

Images and graphics are a super important part of your online presence and design. They can convey complex thoughts and information quickly. They can also ruin the entire design if not used properly. I have seen this happen more often than I like to admit, but from small to large, businesses sometimes pick the worst images possible to convey their message. I wrote an article not too long ago about visuals and graphics that do well on social media where I spent some time explaining why stock photos can come across as phoney.

4. Lack Of Contact Info

Weirdly enough, a lack of contact info is another pretty common mistake. The moment visitors decide to make a purchase, visit your location or give you a call. It’s imperative they have all  the contact information the second they decide they wanna do business with you. If a potential customer has to sift through your site for contact info or address, he or she will likely get frustrated and leave. Your “Contact” page should always be just one click away and your information should be at the bottom of every page.

Make doing business with you as easy as possible. That’s your goal.

5. Paying Too Much Or Not Paying Enough

This is a tough one, since there isn’t a right answer and prices change depending on a series of factors that are completely unrelated to your business. In short, you get what you pay for BUT paying too much won’t necessarily get you more when it comes to web design and digital marketing.

You’d be surprised how many times people ask for my help after they’ve hired a cheap design company, let them make really crappy business decisions, and they end up with a really bad product. On the other hand though, small business owners get lured in by expensive agencies that work with big brands, not realizing these agencies while “hip” and “cool” might completely miss the mark when working with smaller businesses that are looking for a more ROI centric approach.

Spend some time visiting websites of large advertising agencies to see how weird they try to look on purpose in order to sell themselves to large brands as non conventional and avant-garde.

6. Too Many Ads Everywhere

Whether it’s your ads or some other network’s ads, be careful on where you place them and h0w many of them. Obviously, you are trying to advertise your products and services and I even told you to provide click to actions whenever possible but remember there is a fine line between advertising and noise that gets your visitors/customers annoyed.

Check your ads placements like a hawk, if you find them annoying, your visitors will too. Keep it to a minimum and the few you have, make them count by having them professionally designed.

Take a look at this disastrous page:

Key Takeaways

Find an agency or consultant that understands your business and your business goals and trust them when designing your online persona. Now more than ever your digital presence has a direct impact on how successful your business will be.

7 Tips For Better Mobile Search Marketing Results
Posted April 9, 2017 by Anthony Neal Macri

I have worked with many business starting their “marketing” adventure, and generally before we start discussing strategy, goals etc. there are a few things I like to have them define with me.

They need to figure out:

  • Who is the target audience? Have you identified your perfect customer? Who are you selling this to?
  • What is their pain? Why are they coming to you for said pain?
  • How do you or your product solve that pain?
  • Why is your product better at solving that pain than the competitor?

Once all the above questions are answered, we need to map out how to effectively deliver your messaging to your target audience.  Only then we can optimize the content so that is found in search engine results. Mobile and Desktop.

It’s no surprise that mobile search traffic is taking over desktop traffic. You can find lots of studies that discuss exactly this trend.

As an exercise, if you can, access your google analytics account and check the traffic split between desktop and mobile. If your traffic split isn’t close to 50/50, you can safely assume there is something wrong with the mobile side of your website.

Here is a snapshot of my traffic split. Looks healthy:

Now you might be wondering WHY is organic traffic from mobile so important? The fact that combined (tablet and mobile) make up more than a half of the internet traffic and searches should be enough for you to realize that your business cannot afford to miss out on over 50% of the traffic.

The Mobile User Experience

In order to understand how to win at mobile search and how to win at the whole mobile user experience game is to take a step back and try to experience the customer journey from their perspective.

Instead of starting the discussion around why it’s important your website is responsive and all the other mobile design related items, let’s start right from the beginning. Let’s start from when your customer is searching for your product on Google. Your customer is looking for “buy sunglasses” on iPhone:

The first 3 results you see in Google on your mobile are paid ads. It will require scrolling before even seeing the first organic result Google. The user is more likely to click on a paid ad on mobile than it is on desktop. Let’s see what it looks like on desktop when looking for “buy sunglasses”:

desktop-search-buy-sunglasses-Google

It’s evident that the experience of search is much different between desktop and mobile. The differences don’t just stop there.

Think about why someone would use a mobile phone to conduct a search versus on a desktop. Are they on the go? Are they using it as a second screen? Were they referred to your site from a coupon they received via email? Did a friend tell them about your business? Did they just walk by your business and want to know more?

Think about how your users/customers interact with your website on mobile and desktop separately. Think about what is the information you want them to see first when on mobile. Is it a giant image of a product or maybe your address and phone number? There isn’t a right or wrong answer really. It’s just about understanding what’s important to your target audience and designing your mobile experience with that in mind.

Tips For Mobile Marketing Success

As someone looking to successfully market their business, you need to know how to do this for desktop, mobile, and to strike a balance between the two.

I know it’s hard but when designing your user experience you have to separate desktop from mobile. They will need to be designed separately.

1.Find The Right Keywords For Mobile And For Desktop

The way we search on mobile is very different than we search on mobile. Think about how YOU do searches on mobile; are you likely to type out long detailed search queries or are you more likely to type a more broad search query and eventually use one of the suggested searches from Google that appear?

You guessed right. Most people do the latter on mobile.

Use your google analytics account to see what organic keywords are currently bringing traffic to the website and use a rank checker to see how you do in search. If you are at the beginning of the your digital marketing journey and not yet ranked organically use the suggested searches that appear for pointers on what is getting searched the most.

Remember: if you don’t rank in the top-half of the first search results page, your mobile users are not likely to ever find you.

2. Make Your SERP Listing Sexy

SERP listing stands for Search Engine Results Page listing, it’s the text and link that appears on Google whenever your pages are shown. It is the FIRST impression you make on a potential new visitor/customer.

Lets go back to our “buy sunglasses” page to see who’s doing it right and who’s doing it wrong.

The good: Sunglass Hut

This SERP is as good as it gets. I mean there is probably catchier ways of communicating the same thing but SunglassHut is doing it pretty well. All the information is right there within the given amount of characters allowed in the description in Google.

The bad: Clearly Contacts

Whoever is doing the SEO/Digital Marketing for Clearly Contacts Canada needs to get fired. That’s how bad this is. It’s a catastrophic SERP. It’s a wasted opportunity.
All I can read is navigational crap in that description. The only think I can read is some sort of reference to a discount.

Is that what you SERP listing looks like? If so, work on it immediately. It’s working against you.

3. Keep It Local (If Possible)

If you can optimize your website based on a specific address, do it. Mobile users looking for local results will be more likely to go straight to Google’s local business map than browsing around different websites especially if it’s something people generally buy in store (ie. sunglasses).

To do this, be sure to list your site with Google My Business and add a map to your site.

4. Google Has All The Tools

I worked on trying to understand Google for the past 10 years; it’s a love and hate relationship. I think every single digital marketer and business owner feels the same way.

It is important to understand though that while Google likes to complicate things for all of us from time to time, Google is also the one to give us all of the tools necessary to be successful.

Look at Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test. If you’re going to trust anyone’s opinion on your website’s mobile-friendliness, use Google’s tool.

5. Stop Depending On Your Responsive Design

I work with bad mobile sites daily. Many people have bought into the idea that as long a website is responsive you are by definition mobile friendly. Think again.

Just because your pages shift and readjust based on screen size doesn’t mean the website was designed to deliver the information properly and effectively. Are the images too big? Do they take too much space on the screen? Is text so long that requires the user to scroll repeatedly to get to the buy button?

If you’re working with a truly responsive website theme, you should be able to designate which elements of your site can be viewed based on user device.

6. Build With Touch In Mind

If you have ever tried filling out a long poorly designed web form on your mobile you know exactly what I am talking about. Many designs are built on the misguided idea that every use will have access to a physical keyboard and a mouse. Wrong.

Work on making the experience perform with touch. Bigger buttons. Shorter forms. Click to call (or email). And so on. Keep it lean.

7. Optimize For Speed

Page speed plays a very important role in Google’s search algorithms – both for desktop and mobile. (I discussed recently in my article SEO in 2017: 5 Strategies That Don’t Suck). Realistically, a mobile site that takes longer than a few seconds to load isn’t going to work well in ranking organically. So be sure to pay attention to the suggestions you receive from Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test (which is merging with its PageSpeed Insights Tool).

Key Takeaway

Is mobile search marketing and desktop marketing different? ABSOLUTELY.

Do you need to have separate strategies to be successful with both? Yes.

 

 

 

6 Types of Visual Social Media Content That Get Shared The Most
Posted April 6, 2017 by Anthony Neal Macri

Do you want your clients and customers to engage with you on social media? Do you want them to share your content and help you expand your reach?

Images are your best bet.

In the past 10 years working with numerous companies I have noticed one trend. Doesn’t matter what field, what country, what target market. Visual content always performs better.

You might be thinking, if it’s that easy, why isn’t everyone doing it? Well, everyone IS already doing it and 99% of businesses are making this mistake while doing it: the add more visuals just for the sake of it.

Visual content has the power to evoke emotions and grab our attention more than article or catchy headline. Our brains process images 60.000 times faster than text!

You don’t have to be a graphic designer or a visionary artist to nail what images to use on your social media. Just follow my advice here.

1. Stock Photography (the good kind)

Beware: your fans and followers will smell a crappy overused cheap stock photo from a mile away. Younger generations especially, based on a research conducted in London, millennials scored highest when quizzed about stock photography. Don’t believe me? Many stock photos have become internet memes!

On the other hand though there is TONS of amazing stock photos online waiting to be used for free. Check out this article on Canva on places where you can get free stock photos. Good quality photos will make your brand seem more credible, high quality and relevant images help establish your brand’s reputation and boost engagement.

Here is an example of bad stock photo vs. good stock photo:

2. Screenshots (prove your point)

Whenever you are trying to conveying a point or show proof for something, if possible, use a screenshot. The old adage “seeing is believing” is more valid than ever on social media. Psychologically speaking, people are more likely to trust the source whenever they can see something for themselves.

Buffer did this in a really cool way. They used screenshots of the before and after of one of their articles to show how a small change made them receive 300% more visits:

3. Use Personal Photographs

Humans run businesses, other humans buy things from those same businesses. Connect with your audience on a deeply authentic level showing them that you’re human, no matter how successful you are. People find it easy to relate to a business when they can associate a face (or faces) to it.

Look at Richard Branson below. He is announcing a new route for his airline by posing with the crew. That post is doing two things at the same time: 1. promote the new route for the airline 2. making the airline human by adding a face to it. No wonder he is one of the most admired CEOs in the world.

4. Let Your Customers Behind The Scenes

Another great way to connect with your audience, similar to the previous point, is to use photos of the behind the scenes of your business. Nothing says personal like your customer looking into something is made or how the team works together.

This particular type of imagery is more suitable for Instagram and Facebook, which are often considered the more “social”  and less formal mediums. Floral Designer Bruno Duarte, owner of Fresh Floral Creations does this well on his Instagram account by regularly featuring shots of himself putting together floral arrangements followed by shots of the final products.

5. Images that reflect the essence of your brand

If you want to create images that impact your target audience always consider: what’s so unique about your product that made them choose you over the thousands of competitor?

The answer is: whatever makes your brand unique. Use that to strengthen the foundation of your brand loyalty. Remind your customers why the chose you over the competition.

Look at VOSS Water. Advertising itself with values of purity, distinction, and social responsibility, VOSS Water visual social media posts always reinforce one (or more) of these ideals.

6. Quote Graphics

Quote graphics have received their fair share of mockery on the internet, I know. They have been abused by companies, bosses and teenagers for the past few years.

Do they still work? Yes they do! They work on every social network.

When you create quote graphics make sure that the background image fits with the content of the quote and that it doesn’t compete for attention with the text.

When designing your images make sure to pick one style and use it from there on for every quote graphic. You want your customers to recognize your posts visually before they even read the quote. Ask yourself: Is this post in line with the rest? is it instantly recognizable?

You might have noticed that the social media thumbnail used for this article is a completely useless quote image. Why did I do that? To prove that it works.

SEO in 2017: 5 Strategies That Don’t Suck
Posted April 3, 2017 by Anthony Neal Macri

In 2017 trust is the most important metric when it comes to SEO. I have used and abused the term so much that even writing it makes me cringe a little. It’s sad but it’s true. And god it sucks.

You need trust for Google to rank you, and in order to get trust you need Google to rank you, so that people can find your content and link to it?. In short it means that if you are a new comer to this game you are gonna have a tough time. I mean how can you build trust (and have other site link to your great content) if  nobody can find you in the first place?

Don’t cry yet. It’s not that bad. There is still lots you can do.

Trust is most certainly the pathway to Google’s heart, if there is even such a thing. And by leveraging this understanding of trust, we can succeed with SEO as long as we play by Google’s many rules.

Before I jump into the 5 strategies I feel that is important I give you a little bit of background on the algorithm changes that happened in the last few years so that we have a better understanding of how we got here. How did we (SEO people) end up like this?

SEO Algorithm Changes

Google’s main aim is to deliver the most relevant search result in the quickest manner possible. Clearly, it’s been doing a pretty damn good job. So much so that it destroyed its competition, vastly skewing the major market share towards its powerful search, while making the company a household name in the process.

By understanding what’s changed, you can gain perspective into Google’s intentions on what it’s trying to achieve. It’s always going to prioritize content that helps improve the lives of others, delivers value and cares very much about the content people engage most with.

Sounds like relevant search results.

The 3 Pillars Of SEO For 2017

Age 

It’s not just a number anymore. While it’s been somewhat important all along, Google has now made it clear what age means for a domain and what the true impact is. A good old domain that’s been used for years will be given by default more trust than a brand new domain. Keep in mind though, age doesn’t rely on the date you first purchased your domain but instead refers to the indexed age, meaning when Google actually discovered your domain & content.

Authority

It’s quite the big deal and quite hard to get. Authority is generated when websites Google trusts link to your content. Over time Google will give you trust based on who links to you. It’s a slow process.

Problem is, how are you gonna find people to link to you if people can’t even find you? Unless you go viral overnight it is going to an uphill battle that will require time and effort.

Content

Wrote an article yesterday about content marketing and how to write great content and again we find ourselves talking extensively about content even for SEO. What a surprise!

In order to get the attention from the search giant your content has to deliver enormous amounts of value. This isn’t about pushing out meh quality articles whenever you have time. You need to regularly deliver great content on your site, the kind of content that people want to share and engage with.

Content is still king.

My 5 SEO Strategies For 2017

Market your content

Let me say it again: content marketing is going to be maybe THE most important factor in SEO this year. Work on writing amazing content that people will want to share and engage with but also have a strategy on how exactly that content is going to be marketed and distributed. You need to market that content on authority sites such as Quora, Reddit, LinkedIn and other high traffic websites.

Make Your Pages Faster

Google cares very very much about how fast your page loads, now more than ever if you ask me. Use tools like Google PageSpeed Tool to find out if your pages are performing and to find out if there any potential issues.

This goes to show once again that user experience is extremely important after content and trust. Make sure your pages run smoothly and fast at all times.

AMP & The World Of Mobile

I have seen mobile traffic literally take over desktop traffic in the last few years. We use our mobile devices more and more to search for things and to consume content. Google clearly knows that.

The way your pages behave on mobile has a huge impact on your SEO and the way Google will treat you. Just like I said above keep checking to make sure your pages are responsive and served quickly.

Google has also recently launched its Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) project, which further increases mobile load times. You can learn more about the AMP specification here.

Videos, Videos Videos

Just like content marketing is the new cool kid in town, videos are or soon will be replacing written content. Video posts on Facebook alone average 62% more engagement than photo posts.

Your SEO strategy will need the power of video marketing.  Due to the popularity of video platforms such as YouTube and Vimeo, we cannot ignore the power of video content.

Creating useful tutorials and other informative videos are a great way to deliver real value to people in a multimedia format that’s easily accessible to anyone with a smartphone camera.

Be Social

This isn’t about sharing your content repeatedly with others until they give in and share it as well or give you a “pity backlink”. You can’t cheerlead your own cause and expect to get ahead or get trusted by Google. You need to be social, add value to conversations, follow others and take an interest in what those people are doing if you want them to take an interest in you.

9 Reasons Your Content Marketing Strategy Is Failing
Posted April 2, 2017 by Anthony Neal Macri

Content marketing is a powerful and widely adopted strategy that can have countless positive effects on small businesses. It can help your business grow its website traffic from local SEO rankings; increase the amounts of leads and sales, and of course it also helps to build good quality back links to your website, vital to climb to the first page of search engines.

I see many businesses attempt at content marketing and fail miserably. Wether it’s the lack of resources, the lack of a proper strategy or simply bad content, we can all learn a thing or two on how to properly create a plan to tackle content marketing for small businesses.

These are the top 9 reasons why small businesses fail at content marketing.

Core Elements

Don’t know your audience

I have worked with many small and large businesses in the past 10 years to know that as obvious as it may seem MANY businesses have no idea who their target audience is. I have heard things like “everyone who’s interested” or “the more people the better”.

Instead of trying to shout and get everyone’s attention, create exact personas that might be interested in your products and services and from there work your way into creating content that speaks directly to them. Whispering is better than shouting. Always. (learn more about Buyer Personas on Hubspot)

No strategy

The strategy is the cornerstone of the campaign and is driven by the insights gained from understanding who your customers are, and what they want or will find valuable from you or your business.

No goals

Are you creating content with purpose? What is the end goal? What do you expect your customers/users to do? Is your content encouraging that? These are all questions you must answer before writing any sort of piece for marketing. If your goal is to generate more visits to your store or practice then make sure your content does exactly that, give them reasons to visit your location.

No ideas or… bad ideas

This can sometimes be a difficult aspect of content creation for small businesses. There are many tools that you can use to help generate ideas – as well as just running some basic analysis on your competition to find out what’s performing well for them. Remember, it’s not about writing what you think matters, but to write what matters to your audience. How does your audience relate to your product?

 

Content Elements

Content Quality

This is probably one of the biggest reasons your content marketing program is tanking. Many small businesses (and large businesses as well) think that pumping out random 500 words posts will be enough for visitors to find them authoritative in their respective industry. That is simply not true.

Think about investing some money into a skilled writer who is specialized in your niche. Better to push out little but great content than lots of content that is crap.

Completely forgetting about SEO

If you plan on driving traffic from the search engines, you’ll need to at least have the basics of SEO built into every piece of content you create. If you don’t know how to do it, hire an SEO expert to review the structure of your pages and get coached on the best practices to follow.

Glengarry Glen Ross Syndrome

You are always selling. There is nothing more annoying than reading post after post and always being cornered to buy something. Make your content more about the information and less about the selling.

Your page design works against you

I wrote an article about how some badly designed websites make it impossible for users to find information and consume information a few days ago. Sadly, it’s a problem I notice constantly; the content is great but the page is just a disaster to look at or is not conducive to me stopping and reading.

Keep your users in mind. Are they going to enjoy reading your content without being annoyed by popups, newsletter signups forms, Facebook like me sliders etc.?

After it’s published

Lack of promotion strategy

You have a great piece of content published. Now what? The quality of the content and the page it’s published is important just as much as your promotion strategy. The whole point of this is so that people find it and eventually come to your for business. Right?

Every minute there are 211,000,000 pieces of content created, and you think that your piece will be so amazing that it will stand out among that many other pieces of content and magically go viral. You’re going to need to market it through social media outreach, basic PR, and sometimes even through paid channels.

The greater the value of your content the less promotion will be needed for it

Bad Design vs. Good Design: Learn From The Worst Web Designs
Posted April 1, 2017 by Anthony Neal Macri

I always find that looking at badly designed websites alongside with good designs is not only fun but also draws important lessons for designers and provides great pointers for small businesses who might be looking to have their first website designed.

Jared Spool, the American writer, researcher and usability expert, once said: “Good design, when it’s done well, becomes invisible. It’s only when it’s done poorly that we notice it.” So, let’s look at three examples of really horrible designs, shine the light on how good design makes it work, and distil some lessons so we can all create great and invisible experiences for our users.

Information Overload

The Bad: Parking signs in Los Angeles.

If you have ever been to L.A. in the 2010s you will have noticed the crazy parking signs found everywhere around the city and I get it, in almost every big city, the traffic rules are complex and signs are trying to convey a lot of information in a very small space. But how bad are these signs? 

Pretty Bad. Imagine you are driving on this road on a busy Monday morning and trying to figure out parking; How confusing is that?

It’s happening more and more, we try to present as much information as possible in very small spaces. Spaces are becoming smaller and the amount of information delivered only gets more complex; perfect example being mobile websites and apps. So is there a solution to the problem? Nikki Sylianteng did it in L.A.

The good: Nikki Sylianteng’s design 

Brooklyn designer Nikki Sylianteng did it. Her signs are currently used in L.A.

Why is it better?

Because it’s user centric. It will take the average driver about 4 seconds to understand whether parking is allowed or not.

Because it’s visual. There is very little text on that sign. The designer instead is using colours to convey: yes park, no don’t park. Green or Red. Simple.

Lessons to learn:

  • Understand what your users need, then design based on that. This helps reduce information overload and information that is potentially completely unnecessary. Keep it clean and simple.
  •  Try using visuals instead of text. Humans are visual, use that to your advantage.

Mystery Meat Navigation (MMN)

The bad: The-Berg.de

Coined in 1998 by Vincent Flanders of Web Pages That Suck2, the Mystery Meat Navigation (MMN) is when elements of a page are not visible to the user until activated by pointing the cursor to it or clicking on it.

MMN is terrible because it reduces the discoverability of elements of your website and because your users feel as if they have to guess where they clicking.

It’s generally easy finding Mystery Meat on older websites; sadly it’s also quite widespread on modern web designs like the website for The Berg Gallery:

Each hilltop hides a navigational component of the website. It took me about 40 seconds to figure out where the gallery was based out of (It’s the last hilltop bottom right).

Justifications like “Click to find out!” or “Explore the website” is never a good User Experience (UX) solution. Chances are, your users are going to abandon their navigation and find an alternative solution on a competitor’s site.

The Good: Flourish website

Beside this being a beautiful design, it’s also a great example of how naming links and elements on your website is extremely important in order to provide a great user experience.

Lesson to learn:

Name your links.

“Too Animated”

The bad: PayPal Receipt Concept on Dribbble

Animations are a crucial element of interaction design, but they should always serve a purpose. They should never be done because “they look cool”. Unfortunately, designers tend to have a love affair with animations, partly because animations are so fun to create that sometimes they go a little too far.

Vladyslav Tyzun’s animation concept for a PayPal email receipt, posted on Dribbble, is an example of animation done wrongly:

The animation is pretty, but superfluous. In total, it takes a whopping 3.5 seconds to see the transaction details. A simple fade-in of the receipt would be more elegant, and because it takes up less time, better for the user as well.

Remember, users come to sites for a purpose—we want to show them what they are after in a short space and time, not detain them in a grand tour of the gallery.

The Good: Stripe Checkout’s Animation

When we “animate with purpose”, however, the results can be great. Look at Stripe Checkout’s animation when the user receives a verification code, it’s sexy:

Stripe uses animations to make things seem faster than they are: it provides users with updates (like “Sending code…”) even though they might not have received the SMS yet. This prevents users from feeling frustrated at having to wait, and provides assurance that an SMS is on its way right now.

Lesson to Learn:

Always make your animation purposeful: too much can kill the UX of a product. Beauty has to pull its weight and be functional.

 

Want to make your web design suck less? Shoot me an email at anthony@anthonynealmacri.com ?