12 Ways to Add Interactive Content to Your Website
As audience members, we are far more engaged with a story when we ourselves become part of it. We like to feel like our actions have an effect on it, or that we can be the hero we would otherwise be watching. This longing to personally interact with media is why interactive content is such a powerful way to create a better user experience on your website.
Interactive content is any kind of content online that allows a user to have some sort of input—to control the content in some way—and that responds to that input. These pieces of interactive content are useful tools for not only educating a user but doing so in an entertaining and engaging way. They will then associate your brand with a stand-out, positive web experience.
Before we suggest some ways to use interactive content, we have to understand what criteria this content needs to work successfully. Interactive content should:
- Give a compelling story experience: Your audience should care about the story that they are following, whether it’s a well-presented path through hard data or the history of your company. You can decide whether you want your users to be taken down a single narrative path or if they can explore a group of options with more freedom.
- Have great design: Interactive content is heavily visual, so those visual elements should be appealing and cohesive.
- Be easily navigable and function smoothly: Users won’t care to linger on content that lags or is tough to sort through, so make sure that the functional design of your interactive content is easy to interact with.
- Not overwhelm a user with too much information or too many choices: Choice and information fatigue are both very real, so don’t bog your users down with too much.
- Work across platforms: People will be browsing your website on mobile devices, tablets, and desktops. Ensure that your interactive content works nicely on each.
So, here are 12 ways to use interactive content on your website:
- Clickable Maps: Let your users explore an area with the ability to click around a map and get more information about specific locations.
- Games: Make learning fun with games designed to share information in an entertaining way that feels less like reading and more like playing.
- Quizzes: Allow users to test their knowledge with simple quizzes that assist information retention.
- Assessment: Great for evaluations, assessments can help a user better understand something in their life and find suggestions for improvements.
- Infographics: Interactive infographics are great for sorting through hard data and can present information well in a more linear fashion.
- Story Slides: Why give your audience an awesome story that requires a full page of reading? Contain it within a striking design that users can click through piece by piece for a much more engaging and retain-able journey.
- Choose-Your-Own-Adventure-Style Scenario Explorers: We’re all curious about which way the future might take us, so give users the chance to explore by making a story affected by choice.
- Product Recommenders: Like the scenario explorers, you could ask users to make choices that lead to personalized product recommendations.
- Interactive Video: Videos that have stopping points and offer user choice similar to the last two types of interactive content are highly engaging. Another form of this is 360 video that users can look around to feel more immersed.
- Calculators: Help users add things up with calculators—great for harnessing data and showing its usefulness.
- Product Demonstrations: Virtual product demonstrations can put the power into the user’s hands, letting them see what their money can buy if they choose to engage with your brand’s products.
- Contests: Everyone wants to be a winner, and contests that require some sort of interaction are an easy way to make people want to engage.
If you’re looking for a way to increase user engagement and make your website stand out, interactive content is the answer. Just remember that, to use interactive content well, you need to use it to tell the right kinds of stories and you need to design it so that people will actually want to play along.
Is your brand in need of a new or revamped website to improve your online presence? Or the right content to keep up with the times? Kraus Marketing’s experienced team of digital marketing experts can help. Contact us today to learn more.