Fundamentals of Emotional Web Design: Building in 6 Steps

Michael Evans 15 January, 2015 870

You have seen those metrics on Google Analytics or whatever tracking application you are using – the metrics of returning visitors. It makes you wonder what makes visitors to return to your website from time to time. Definitely, they don’t know you personally but something must have been inspiring or encouraging them to visit your website again and again.

Emotional Web Design

Actually, it is the complicated emotional appeal of the website that keeps your customers connected with it. The color, the font, CTA buttons, the images, body copy, etc. create an ambience that is welcoming to the visitors. This emotional appeal and the intimate connection between the website and the audience have eventually given rise to the idea of emotional web design.

Digging Deeper

The idea of emotional web design may seem too complicated, if not overwhelmingly difficult but this is far from the truth. It is just about befriending with the visitors by making them feel at home on your website.

To connect with audience on an emotional level, companies are now coming up with tons of creative ideas. They are giving their ‘professional’ website a refreshing makeover by developing a personality or mascot for it. Some are even going extra miles by presenting engaging stories to capture attention of the audience.

Once people feel comfortable with the website and its ideas, they start doing things that you will expect them to do like signing up for mail list, making purchases or sending you an email. But to achieve this, you will have to make sure that the website is able to evoke emotion. This can be done by adding personal touches as it is famed for adding life to soulless objects.

So, if you wish to incorporate some elements of emotion in your website to turn things around but don’t have any idea where to start, you need to follow these tips:

Trust on Human Nature

Everyone loves to look at a pretty face, right we are? Think this way – if you are to choose between Voldemort and Harry Potter, which image you will prefer to feature on your website to convince your customers? If you have a unique sense of humor, you will definitely go for the Voldemort picture just to terrorize the visitors into submission or to buy your products to be precise. Therefore, it is a usual thing to use images of models, sport stars to grab the attention of the audience and to win their trust.

Some designers put their trust on innocent faces. It is quite common for web designers to use the image of children to win the trust of the audience. Who can possibly ignore an image of a child on a website smiling at him? It is a power that helps to convey the message easier. The same can be said about websites that are using the image of pregnant women, cartoons or unconventional looking models.

The idea is to stir up emotion and make people trust your brand.

CutestPaw Emotional Web Design

This creative website has used an image of a cute cat and who does not love cats? After all, as some people believe, Internet is all about cat videos. Animal lovers (this is a bigger part of the world population) are definitely going to love this website.

Emotional Web Design Charity

The above Charity Web Template displays an evocative image of a child. The big eyes of a kid are powerful enough to seize the attention of even a casual visitor. This is just an image but the impact is palpable.

Know Your Audience

How on earth you are going to connect to your targeted audience if you have no idea who they are? Knowing your audience does not end at gathering information about their age, sex, country, profession etc. When you are trying to connect with people on an emotional level, you will have to go beyond that. If you are selling a service, your website should make it abundantly clear that you understand the problem of your potential customers clearly and you have the right solution.

Emotional Web Design Tripsniffer

Tripsniffer understands its audience pretty well and which is why it uses a beautiful nature image to make its audience fall in love with the website. Even the rest of the images of the website (bag packs, maps, a tent set amidst Snowcovered Mountain) are in line with its message.

Once you know your audience well, you will be able to understand their problem and this will help you to connect with them. Use those vital clues about your audience to your advantages by incorporating them in the design process of your website.

Emotional Web Design Sports

In this Paintball Website Template, the designer has done an incredible job by using the right words (‘let adrenaline play‘) and the right image and this helps people get the message of the website perfectly.

Use Humor

The best way to make people notice your website and get them connected to your brand is by adding some elements of fun on your website. If you can make your targeted audience giggle, half of the battle is won.

Emotional Web Design Humor

Wondergiant features a giant in its website and the giant is in fact helping, accompanying and sometimes having fun with employees. The idea is unique and funny in its own way.

Emotional Web Design Use Humor

Dairygivesyougo has employed an ingenious technique to keep people hooked on its website even when the site does not load properly. It has used the above funny image to encourage people to stick around while the website is loading. Since the message is a bit funny, most people would not mind waiting few more seconds to get to have a look at that website.

Emotional Web Design Example

Chubbygrub definitely has a great sense of humor as it is asking people to subscribe to its newsletter by coming up with a strikingly funny message. The idea is funny, creative and cool.

Use Great images to Connect

If you want to connect with your targeted audience, you have to use the right image. There is no way around this. Most people want to feel that they are in control when they are browsing a website and therefore, it would be great if you can use images judiciously on your website.

Emotional Web Design Photography

This Portfolio Website Template uses the image of a model as a background image and the impact is quite obvious. It looks tempting, charming and elegant. The most important is that this picture evokes emotions, and not obligatory all users feel the same about it.

Opt out dark and somber images rather you need to use bright, colorful and inspiring images to make people fall in love with your website.

Pay Attention to Details

Just knowing your audience is not going to help you much if your website is in shamble. If visitors had to struggle to find the Contact Us page or if the website takes forever to get loaded, nothing can save your website from falling from the grace of the visitors.

Make sure the design is clean and simple. There should be enough white space so that people can concentrate on the core areas of the website and take the desired actions.

The design should have room to breathe but that does not mean that you should make it look boring. Nope, you need to brainstorm to come up with creative ideas and integrate those ideas into the design.

Keep the focus on navigation and make sure people are not having any difficulty while navigating the website. Add a search button and if possible add a sitemap to your website as this is how users locate internal pages of the website.

Emotional Web Design Features

Rosecottagecanberra is a perfect example of simplicity at its best. At the top, we have button for enquiry and at the bottom, we have the navigation bar.

Emotional Web Design Travel

The Travel Web Template is simple yet irresistible as far as the design is concerned. Just a single image, few words and a cool gradient effect and the outcome is really impressive.

Balance Colors

Color is certainly one of the many design aspects that have a direct bearing on the audience. A slight change in the color combination or even a minor change in hue and saturation can usher radical change in the perception of people.

Emotional Web Design Colors

For example, what do you feel looking at this Spa Website Template? It’s most likely that you have positive feelings about this design, because it uses color green as a symbol of balance and relaxation, the color of sun and such pleasing tones as orange and pink.

You need to be careful while choosing the right color combination for your website. Probably you should read this article to know more about color mixing.

So, these are some factors that you need to take into consideration if you are trying to connect with your targeted audience on an emotional level and create a website that really makes users feel.

Author: Michael Evans
There are a lot of topics Michael can cover. But web design and development are his favorite ones. He likes all IT-related stuff and can share his experience with you. Check out his latest posts on our blog.