ARCHIVE / Should we use an avatar on our site?

Because animation and sound can distract from reading, whether or not to use an avatar on your site depends mostly on the purpose your site serves.  If the aim of your site is to inform visitors or sell goods or services to visitors then avatars are likely to detract from that aim.  If the aim of your site is to entertain, rather than inform, there may be opportunities to use avatars to tell a story or embody characters with which you would like your visitors to interact.  Online games are a good example in which avatars may serve an effective purpose.  In the vast majority of cases, however, avatars should be avoided.

last updated 2008.08.03

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