Have you ever thought about a website as a character before? Until I sat down and tried to create a good character not too long ago, neither had I.
I wanted this character to be different. Unique. I wanted them to be relatable, strong and memorable. To have intelligence and personality. I thought about all the incredible characters I’ve fallen in love with over the years; Elizabeth Bennet, Tyrion Lannister, Peregrin Took, Villanelle or Atticus Finch. They are all so different, yet each beloved across the world.
Why is it we connect so greatly with these characters, to the point where they become a figure outside of the story and inhabit a space of their own? How have they come to be such important figures in literature and popular culture? And what then, are the qualities that link all of them to one another, when they are so undecidedly different?
And that’s when it clicked.
Characters are the cornerstone of a story; they drive it and bring it to life, just as a website does to a business. And when you really think about it, the qualities that define a good character, are synonymous with those of a good website.
But What Are the Qualities of a Good Character?
Well, a good character has:
- Personality and Attitude
- Growth and Development
- Goals and Motivation
Stories that develop such qualities in their characters are the ones that forever embed themselves in the minds of readers. However, without strong characters, the plot could potentially be made redundant. Why? Because there is nothing driving it forward.
This is common within businesses, where the website acts less as an important figure and more as a box that needs to be ticked off. Without a good website, the core of your business has the potential of being mis-represented and under-valued. Instead, you want your website to be the character that makes clients fall in love with your business.
So How Can Understanding a Good Character Affect the Development of Your Website?
Personality and Attitude
It is so important for your website to have personality. People are far more likely to engage with something that shows passion and creativity, rather than something that feels robotic and lifeless.
Let your website speak for your business. Is it website funny? Dedicated? Colourful? Innovative? Quirky? Insightful? Fun? Don’t forget that professionalism doesn’t negate creativity. You are allowed to show elements of character and wit, while also appealing to the professional side of the business. Bring it to life and let it breathe. This, above most, is what will help you to connect with your clients.
Dimension helps to establish a character as multifaceted. And while a website may not have any internal conflict over childhood trauma or a long-lost love, dimension can be shown in the different layers which make it up, such as:
These elements are so important to the success of your website. For example, the words you use play a huge part in creating the tone and character of your pages. This is also true for the website’s design; how interactive and engaging it is, as well as the graphics embedded throughout. By neglecting the significance of these elements, you run the risk of presenting your website as two-dimensional, rather than complex and layered. Make sure you are consistent within your brand’s style and brand image. By doing this, its personality will only shine and grow.
Motivation and Goals
Your website needs to show drive! Letting prospective clients see that your business has motivation and goals when it comes to your work, will help to establish credibility and trust with them. What does your website care about? What empowers it? What is it working towards? You can show this by displaying examples of your business’s work, as well as explicitly detailing what your business values.
For example, White Peak Digital:
Strives to improve every business we work with through incredible digital design.
Make sure you are using motivating and actionable language. It will only appeal to your audience more and help to strengthen your connection with them.
Growth and Development
This is key.
Brands and businesses change, just as people and characters do. Without growth and development, a business can become stagnant and often gets left behind. If everything around us is constantly growing and changing, how can you expect clients to connect with something that doesn’t? And while re-branding is a great way to achieve this, it also doesn’t have to be shown in one big hit. Growth can happen over an extended period of time. As long as you are regularly keeping the website updated and engaging, clients will be able to see long-term development within the business.
Just as a character’s development can be shaped by the relationships they share, so too is the progress of your website. By showing that your website is open to creating relationships with new clients, as well as displaying those already existing, you will be able to establish a greater amount of credibility for your brand.
Sometimes it’s hard to know where to begin with a website. But with the right tools and outlook, everything can become clearer. So next time you are creating or rebranding your website, perhaps this is a new way of looking at things: make your website the next beloved virtual character of the world.
If you have any questions about Web Design or Development, please get in touch!