Micro-animations are short, small animations added to parts of a user interface to make them clearer and visually appealing. They enhance the overall user experience in tiny but significant ways.
I'm known to sometimes visit a pub with friends. Not often, of course — there's work to be done, right? But when I go (again: hardly ever, really) and there's a TV at the pub, I watch. It's not that my friends are boring, but there's something about moving images: they catch your attention. It might be football, it might be the news, it might be a presentation on data analysis — whatever it is, I watch.
The impossibility of ignoring moving images points to one of the advantages of incorporating micro-animations into a design. As a web designer, you want to guide your user's eyes across the pages or through an app. To do this, you have several tools at your disposal, such as bright colors, large fonts, and: motion!
Micro-animations cleverly leverate the human tendency to focus on movement. Imagine, for instance, you're creating a website for a photographer. They might want to sart with a full-screen photograph. At the same time, it's crucial that visitors understand they need to scroll down. A possible solution? Add a downward-pointing arrow that subtly moves up and, slightly faster, down. This communicates there's something down there and people will scroll.
It is just one of the countless possibilities micro-animations offer. As a user interface designer, they are indispensable in your toolbox, and it's wise to actively improve your skill in this area.
To get you started, here are a few examples of how micro animations can enhance your product:
Provide feedback, such as a button that lights up red when something is wrong.
Verify input, like a checkmark that appears when the input is incorrect.
Improve navigation, like a sliding search bar that takes up minimal space when not in use.
Reduce confusion, such as a password field that shakes when the input is incorrect.
Micro-animations are an effective way to make websites and applications more interactive and appealing. Use them to enhance your clients' user experience, bring your designs to life, and show off your capabilities.