Do You Want Your Website To Tell a Better Story?

parallax pro for Genesis

Paralyzed.

That’s how you feel some of the time, maybe a lot of time, when you sit down to deliver your message to your audience.

How do I know? Because it’s how I feel some of the time (okay, a lot of time) too.

You want to tell a story. I want to tell a story. But so often when we tell stories on the Internet, our words have to do all the heavy lifting.

That’s pressure.

Wouldn’t it be great to have a design with the strength and style to lighten the storytelling load?

That’s parallax.

And what if such a design were simple to set up? What if it were as easy as slipping a cashmere sweater over a pressed collared shirt and the perfect color tie?

That’s Parallax Pro for Genesis … the next generation of storytelling on the web.

What is parallax, anyway?

Despite its jargony name, Parallax is actually a pretty simple concept: the change in the apparent position of an object when viewed from two different vantage points.

Have a look:

Parallax

You see the perspective shifting from right to left and left to right. Do you see how the objects in the background appear to move slower than those in the foreground? That’s parallax.

Parallax scrolling is used in graphics and web design to create this effect and give a two-dimensional world a three-dimensional feel.

For a simple example of how this works horizontally in gaming, click here.

For a simple example of how this works vertically in web design, click here.

Parallax web design

In case you didn’t click on that last link, it takes you to the demo of Parallax Pro, the latest child theme released for the Genesis Framework by the StudioPress team.

Do you notice how, as you scroll down the page, the words appear to move faster than the beautiful, high-resolution background images?

This is the present and future of web design, and something tells me this isn’t the first time you’ve been exposed to it (even if you didn’t know what to call it).

Award-winning examples of Parallax design include the official website for the movie Life of Pi, Lexus, and NASA Prospect.

That NASA Prospect one? Wow. Talk about storytelling with design.

Don’t you want to make people say “Wow” when they visit your website too?

And without knowing anything but the basics about design?

Then Parallax Pro may be for you

It was just two weeks ago that Parallax Pro was unleashed on the world. Yet, already there are stunning examples of its storytelling magnificence live for us to use as reference points.

Check out Growly Books.

growly

It’s not nearly as complicated as the award-winning examples I linked to above. Which is fine. You don’t need that level of complexity to tell your online story effectively.

Here is another example: Minima Designs.

minima

You increase conversions when you invoke positive emotions and a human touch. That is exactly what is going on here.

Parallax Pro makes it simple to provide the subtle human touch that makes for great subliminal storytelling.

It also never hurts to have a jaw-dropping design on a site that is selling design services.

And if you’re one of those who expects eat-your-own-dogfood leadership by designers …

brian-gardner

Have a look at the latest design for StudioPress founder Brian Gardner’s site.

Scroll down and check out the “Welcome to My Space” section at the bottom. That’s how you tell a story through the seamless integration of words and pictures. It’s what Parallax Pro is designed to do.

What you should do next

Simply put: No other recent web design technique has done more to impact the way we tell stories online than parallax. And now you’re just minutes away from having it on your website.

That’s not to say it’s for everyone. I still use the 411 Theme on my personal website, because it fits better (for now).

But I’ve also tripled on-site engagement with my media and built a substantial email list from nothing since converting to a parallax-style design on my other side-project site. The story the design helps me tell visitors immediately is a big reason why.

Do you want your website to look like it was designed in 2015, not 2005?

Do you want it to pull people in while they scroll, not push them away?

Do you want your website to tell better a story?

You know what to do …

Pick up a copy of Parallax Pro today

Wikipedia Creative Commons Image: Parallax

About the author

Jerod Morris


Jerod Morris is the VP of Marketing for Copyblogger Media. Get more from him on Twitter or . Have you gotten your wristband yet?

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Comments

  1. Hey Jerod,

    Thanks for the new theme introduction

    The way visitor perceives and consumes website in general and its content determines the success of the online business to a large extent.

    And it is what makes the cooperation of technology, psychology and business world so successful.

    Talking about website themes in particular:

    New possibilities of websites, as far as I see, have the following tendencies:
    - moving forward to more visual attraction without much distraction,

    - more engagement (interaction) with user (e.g. imagine the symbiosis of classical static content and high-quality visual games – and maybe you will imagine the websites of the future),

    - more focus-oriented websites (now most website themes are still too broad targeted). Imagine the themes specifically created for bloggers in a certain niche. Such website themes will be created with a psychological research behind the curtains – each specific audience has its specific patterns of perceiving and consuming information. For now this task is left to website owners – they need to choose a website theme from the whole range of available themes.

    Anyway, in my opinion, the website themes will be developing mostly thanks to technological breakthroughs. Because a new visual approach is something that attracts website owners really well.

    At the same time, no matter how unique and cool your website theme looks like, there is still a big load of work left how to put a real story into your website – I mean a real content (and the channels of perceiving this content) as well as really personal and engaging interaction with your audience.

    It is interesting to see how website themes will be developing.

  2. I love the design of Parallax!

    Congratulations to Brian and the rest of the team for such a great addition.

    Actually, it inspired me so much and gave me a confidence boost that I want to create my own Genesis child theme now. :) It was time for a redesign anyway.

    Hope to be able to make it at least 50% as amazing as Parallax.

  3. I honestly never knew that much about parallax before, but now I see why it’s important to hire the right designers who understand it. Thanks for the great article!

    I definitely agree that it’s worth shelling the money out for the right person to re-design your website to fit with the times. Otherwise, you risk losing potential clients for having an outdated site.

    • Yes, it’s very important to hire the right designers! A good designer should understand when and how to use parallax to add value to a website, but they should also understand when not to use it. Never use parallax just for the sake of parallax. If used wrong it will distract from the message of the website. And if implemented wrong, it will make your website choppy and awkward to use on most older computers.

      But this new theme seems to be well done–a beautiful, subtle addition to the design of the site and well executed so it performs very well.

  4. What I really like about the new theme is the control over the text placement. This offers a lot of neat design aspects that creatively mesh aesthetics with text and other selling elements.

  5. So glad that I ran into this post. I’ve been seeing this on websites recently and did not really know what I was looking at. I tried to explain it to my developer, but was having trouble phrasing it right! This helped tons.

    • I’ve found that many “developers” have a hard time with the creative side of web design. Of course, many “designers” go overboard with the visual appearance of websites. Over the past 5 years the web has evolved into its own medium. It’s no longer about programming (the developer side) or graphic designer (the traditional designer).

      People go online to accomplish a task, so the web is more about experience. And people are going online with phones, tables and desktop computers. So focus on creating a good user experience, which may or may not include parallax.

      Regardless, it’s great to have this new parallax theme to add to our toolboxes!

  6. Too often people abuse the parallax effect on websites. They add it for the “coolness” of being something new, but the result is often a distraction from the story being told on the website because of too much movement on the page, or a jarring and disjointed user experience as older computers struggle to render the parallax effect correctly.

    But this theme appears to be good at keeping the effect simple, so it adds to the message of the site, and performance seems to be very smooth and well done. Kudos to those who created the Parallax Pro theme!

    Parallax websites aren’t for everyone, but it’s nice to have a solid design in the StudioPress collection of themes.

  7. Hi Brian I am also using this theme and just love it

  8. Thanks for sharing this info Jerod. The phenomenon of parallax scrolling website design is growing in popularity across the internet, bringing the user experience to a new interactive level of online viewing. With web designers and developers constantly exploring new ways to make their web presence more appealing to their sites’ visitors through engaging visuals and functionality, parallax scrolling has taken hold as the new frontier of user experience.

  9. Interesting trend: integration between web design and content strategy & story telling (particularly evident in the NASA Prospect website). Huge thanks to the developers of Parallax!

  10. Nice theme and cool story telling tips on website, I loved the idea of putting positive emotions on a website :)