Microinteractions are magical little moments that happen when you’re using a website, app or social media channel. If they’re implemented well, you might not even notice them, but they’ll often enhance your user experience.

Examples of Microinteractions

  • The little progress bar that shows how your download or site loading is going
  • A swipe action to clear a message or notification
  • The scroll bar on the right-hand side of a web page when you move your mouse
  • An emoji on a social media channel

Microinteractions are powerful because they give something back to the user. This builds engagement and creates a feeling of personalisation and interactivity with the experience. 

Most importantly though, they add a dose of fun to any project or experience that you are engaging with.

Speed and Performance

Microinteractions can do a lot more than engage users, and in some cases can actually enhance the speed and performance of an application.
For example, lazy loading is a well known way to improve the performance of a website because the content loads in phases, rather than all upfront. So the user doesn’t need to wait for the entire page to load before they can start using it. Microinteractions in this case can take many forms, like buffering icons or pop-up notifications explaining to the user that the rest of the content or images will load soon.
This builds trust in the site and also makes the user feel as though the makers of the site or app care about them, the user. So, they’re more likely to return to it in the future.

You’ve got the power

The best kind of user experience is one that gives users some control. Microinteractions are a dynamic way to give the user a sense of power if they’re able to influence what happens next.

Drag and drop is a cool way of allowing users to influence where they want content to be placed. Customisable dashboards often include simple icons that explain how users can move chunks of content around. Little hints and tips can pop up at various stages of the journey using animations instead of boring text guides.

Remember the annoying animated paperclip that used to pop up on Microsoft Word and ask if you wanted help? This was probably one of the earliest examples of microinteraction …fortunately they’ve come a long way since then!

Keep it interesting

Attention spans are at an all-time low as people are bombarded with digital technology in a myriad of forms.

Microinteractions are effective as a way of keeping users interested and engaged, especially whilst waiting for something to happen. If a user needs to wait a little while for your content to load, why not present them with something cool to look at while they wait?

A little animation that makes users smile is a welcome distraction from the unimaginable pain of waiting a few seconds for a web page to load. We’re all glued to our phones these days, so if your user’s experience breaks even for a few seconds whilst content loads, you’ll need to keep them hooked with something interesting if you want to prevent them from leaving your site and going elsewhere.

Software Animation
animation for software

Error states

Another way in which microinteractions can enhance the user experience is when they’re used to show errors. Instead of showing an error page or simply freezing the process if the user makes a mistake, microinteractions uses colours, animation and movement to indicate to the user that something isn’t quite right.

When you enter the password incorrectly on your mobile phone, you’ll often see the buttons turn red or the screen shudder in frustration at your gross incompetence (just kidding, we all know those buttons are hard to hit every time!)

These microinteractions give you visual feedback in a positive and playful way.

What do we know about Microinteractions?

At The Animation Guys, we know a lot about how to use animation and motion graphics to create an engaging and powerful experience for end users. We specialise in creating bespoke animated videos, and have extensive experience across multiple industries, channels and client types.

We think that any animation, from the smallest interaction to massive scale animation projects, can do wonders for your brand. This is why we’re constantly learning about new and game-changing innovations in the animation space.

Take a look at some of our past work to get a feel for what we do and how we use animation to bring our clients’ visions to life. Or have a look at some of these top 10 microinteractions that can inspire your future project.

Get in touch to find out how microinteractions can improve the performance metrics on your website or app and delight users in the process!

Time To Transform Your User Journey

Being a specialist in enhancing your customer’s experience with your product, we have learnt how to get the most from your animation. We can work with you to ensure the design is clear, concise and on brand. You can also get in contact with us to talk through your creative vision. We are here to help you tell your story.

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