Using Cinemagraphs on Your Website Can Grab The Users Attention

Website designers are forever in pursuit of new ideas that will engage and resonate with visitors. They want to convert quick site visits into lasting engagement and product sales. One of those ideas – cinemagraphs – is seen as one of the top web design trends for 2019. But what are they and why are they useful in your website design?

What are Cinemagraphs?

Have you ever seen the Harry Potter movies? If so, you’re familiar with the photographs in picture frames and on the pages of the Daily Prophet where the image moves. It’s cool and attention-drawing, right? A cinemagraph is the same idea. It’s a still photograph in which a small, repeating movement occurs so it appears as animation.

But isn’t that like an animated GIF? Well, not really. An animated GIF is a small cut of a video or animation played on a loop. The entire image is animated. It allows for just 256 colors and provides a low-quality moving image. GIFs have been around for years and are meant to elicit quick amusement, rather than serious thought. A cinemagraph, on the other hand, can use millions of colors and presents a high-quality product.

Why Use Cinemagraphs?

A cinemagraph can be artsy, thought-provoking, interesting, and engaging. By zeroing in on just one part of a photo and giving it life, it can evoke very specific emotions in the visitors to your site. Simply put, a cinemagraph is captivating, prompting nearly six times more click-throughs than a still image and garnering 71% more organic reach.

Because most social media platforms support cinemagraphs, they are ideal for social media campaigns. They can be relatively inexpensive to produce. Plus, you can save them in different file formats. They also won’t slow down your site’s performance.  

Creating Cinemagraphs 

Rumor has it that cinemagraphs can be difficult to create. If you’re set on creating a  high-quality work of art, that may be true. But if you want to give it a try yourself, there are numerous apps to help you out, including Loopsie, MaskArt, and Flixel. Essentially, you shoot a video, then keep most of it as a still frame, while isolating out a section of the photo that you want to show animation.

Are Cinemagraphs Right for Your Brand?

The short answer is … maybe. Cinemagraphs certainly work better when they’re done thoughtfully and well. The effect is lost if your end product isn’t seamless or without real purpose beyond taking advantage of a trend.

If you want some ideas about how you might be able to use cinemagraphs in your marketing, give us a call. We can help you identify whether it’s right for your brand.