08 May Top 5 reasons why microsites are effective for businesses
Microsites are brand-specific websites or a single web page that companies can use to promote their products, events, or even link with a campaign. They are usually hosted on their domain or the company’s subdomain. Most of them have a different URL from their company website.
MIcrosites tend to be non-application based sites; in other words, they do not have an eCommerce functionality. Instead, they are will with information, aimed to be engaging for as many people as possible. The content is usually fun, and interactive helping brands connect with users. They also do not provide information about the parent brand or company, lacking web pages like “About Us”, or “The Team”, etc.
So here are the top 5 reasons microsites are effective for businesses.
1. Microsites are created to be Interactive.
People are looking for interactive experiences nowadays, they want something that they can connect with, and this should be noted when designing a great microsite. Creating an interactive microsite can be done through online gamification, which is the integration of gaming mechanics to non-traditional gaming platforms, exactly what Air France capitalised on in their Question in the Sky microsite.
The microsite was designed to target children and answer questions they usually ask about air travel. While children were the primary target for the microsite, the microsite also works as an experience extension for adult customers who have children. Adults can also find interactive gamified microsites fun and exciting, raising brand awareness.
Using direction keys, users would navigate a plane towards clouds with graphics that are related to a specific topic. The microsite is interactive as pilots can choose which graphics they want to fly their aeroplanes too.
The microsite uses a mix of different media formats – audio, gameplay, video, animation – and works seamlessly without any lag is of note. The microsite delivers in engagement and interactivity.
Microsites that are interactive with a gamification element can have a higher chance of being shared among consumers, potentially helping to drive sales for a business.
2. Microsites are Engaging.
One of the most significant benefits of using a microsite is how a brand can use it as a platform for a specific campaign. By placing content in a separate site, away from its main website, the brand can have concentrated visibility that makes it engaging instead of having it compete with everything else on the leading site. It can also exist outside the restrictions of the main website’s functionality.
People want to be entertained; they want to have a fun, memorable experience. So, if you’re going to build a microsite that contains one type of medium, it is essential to make the best use of the medium to ensure that the user is engaged.
The Waterwise – Every Last Drop microsite was built to provide information to consumers about water shortage and climate change through a series of interactive infographics.
As users scroll further down, the setting and the avatar changes, shifting from the bedroom to the bathroom. This scroll and move animated function gives the site its interactivity.
The objective of delivering information to users engagingly and uniquely is what makes it stand out. Another feature of note form the microsite is its gamification element. There is a section where users must “drive” the avatar down a road. Details like this, no matter how small, can mean the difference between a memorable experience and one that is forgettable.
Being engaging or not can mean a world of difference to a brand, so instead of filling a microsite with just information, find a chance to spice up the experience, cementing a place within consumers minds.
3. Microsites are easy to Personalise.
What does it mean when “easy to personalise” is used, it means that each user will be able to have a personal experience with the content on the microsite.
One great example is the Adobe Creative Types microsite. The microsite asks users simple but exciting questions and matches the overall answers to creative traits. It also offers users a breakdown of what sort of creative they are and advice on how to improve further.
The microsite not only showcases Adobe’s creativity, but it also raises brand awareness and allows them to connect with their audiences. It is fun and incredibly personable as each user will have different answers to the questions that are posed, creating a unique experience for the users.
Microsites do not only connect and engage, but they can also help record and analyse data. By looking at what people are choosing to click, and view, companies and businesses can collect data on consumers’ preferences, it’s an incredibly subtle, but still very effective method of collecting consumer information innovatively.
4. Microsites have Decreased Distractions.
Great campaigns usually drive traffic directly to a microsite. With the brand’s main site navigation and unnecessary elements removed, visitors can entirely focus on your campaign and its calls to action without being distracted. Microsites don’t need to be tied to corporate templates as well, so they can be created to match the campaign’s design and content.
To support their “Burger BFF” campaign, Mellow Mushroom, a pizzeria franchise in Atlanta, Georgia, created a microsite. The campaign aimed to create buzz on their newest menu items, a vegetarian burger, and a beef burger.
The menu items were adapted into cartoon BFFs for the microsite. The site was then used to promote the chance for consumers to win a round trip to Denver or Seattle with their best friend.
The microsite also offered users several engaging and interactive ways to enter the contest such as including quizzes and a Mad Libs-style storytelling generator. The entire site was just created solely to focus on the competition, and it worked.
Campaign microsites like this are a great way of removing all the additional elements that a regular company website has. Features like About Us pages and Project pages can be excluded altogether, allowing consumers to only see campaign-related information.
5. Microsites can help with SEO
Every microsite is its website, therefore having its own URL. With a unique address, people can easily find your products and services, which is an advantage in search engine optimisation. Your microsite can contain an assortment of keyword-rich domain names that are valued by Google, Yahoo, and other search engines. Though a new domain may not have the established SEO authority as a brand website, new pages that are keyword-rich will draw more qualified traffic to the new site. Regular websites can not have more than one to two keywords in their domain name; this is the part that helps the importance of your content ranking. Which, in turn, helps in SEO.
However, a microsite should be created only if it serves a unique purpose that relates to the brand overall.
Sites that are created to give backlinks or boost specific keywords is considered a black hat SEO tactic that Google considers spammy. Google will also find these sites low quality and penalise them. To avoid a penalty, it is better for brands to only create microsites for branding purposes.
Based on all the examples above, it is clear that microsites are fantastic tools for businesses to have. They can be easily manipulated to fit the needs of campaigns and businesses, and still, be jam-packed with important information. They help highlight and feature only what is needed, boosting the experience that consumers can have with brands. Hence, we believe that with microsites your business will be able to go above and beyond for your customers.
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