Let’s start with a bit of history: the technology that allows 3D online (WebGL) was released in 2009 and yet, almost 10 years after, 3D is not very common online.
First, because the browsers took some time to support the WebGL API in their software (Firefox in 2011, Chrome/Safari in 2012 and IE in 2013).
Also because as it was new, the API was not the best to use yet and you couldn’t do much with it at the time. But the WebGL API is still getting better and better. Libraries using WebGL emerged to make it easy to use: it is the case of BABYLONJS which Naker loves!
Aren’t you a bit sad when you navigate in today’s internet? Me, I sure am! The cause of my sadness is that main of the websites are following the same patterns and logic: a plane layer which goes up when you scroll, some images that illustrate what you are reading, almost always a top navigation bar stick to the top, etc, etc.
I understand this is effective because everyone is used to that and you can’t get lost! But, that makes it sometimes sooooo dull!
I am sure all of you have already seen this codepen background used to reflect the complexity of a solution or the knowledge of a team. Every time I feel like: “ Oh no, not that stuff again!” 😂 And you can’t blame them because you don’t always have the time or the skills so you just copycat what is working online.
This is where 3D arrives to help. A new dimension means a lot of new possibilities: detailed materials, light effects, models, animations and movements, particles. Everything you could need to create an entire world which will match the product or the idea anyone needs or wants to promote. 3D will make it so immersive compared with a classic 2D that users will sure remember it.
If you have launched a website 15 years ago, you didn’t hear about adaptative websites. And today your website won’t be considered if it is not responsive. Well, fear no more! One of the advantage in using a 3D scene on your website is that it will be automatically responsive. As said the last 3D web APIs are now working on all browsers (see this topic), so it doesn’t matter if you are on your smartphone or computer, the scene will always work.
Even better! On what support 3D worlds are also great? Virtual Reality! Even if it is not yet widespread (Apple is working on it), having a 3D website allow you to be VR-ready straight away.
And we can imagine going even further with the development of the recent PWA (Progressive Web App) which aim to make any website working as a desktop or mobile application. Thus your 3D experience will not only work online but also on all your machines and without any internet connexion. Can you imagine creating a 3D website/scene only once and it will be automatically working anywhere! Nice hein?!
A good way to illustrate a 3D experience is to make people imagine a game but in your browser. It is not yet the same as you can’t yet do as much as on a real game engine (but we will get there). However, you can already make your 3D website very interactive. It is not about creating an entire city or climbing on buildings, it is more about making you explore an environment and interact with the objects in the scene.
One good example is the Pottermore experience detailed here where you discover places in the Hogwarts castle and look for candles to explore everything.
Plus as we are not yet used to see 3D website, you immediately create a wow effect. As users usually associate 3D with games, this kind of website will make the user want to play with it. And he is right! Thus the user enjoys the time he navigates on this kind of experience and he will talk about it.
A new expression we see more and more online: Digital Experience. This is the new name given to website which offers interaction with the user to improve the user experience and thus better answer the user needs.
3D is the perfect way to create a digital experience. No matter if this is to promote the last famous product, a portfolio, a new start-up technology or even a yearly event, an interaction is always more potent on a 3D design because it can go further.
You will be able to make the visitor travels in your creation and making him experience something new that he hasn’t seen before! (#back to first paragraph). Creating emotions and joy means creating Engagement and Empowerment. The more you make your visitor dream and fly, the more he will follow you.
We can see there are a lot of reasons showing online 3D has some excellent days, months and years to come. It is already happening as if you go to awwwards and check the last rewards, 3D experiences are becoming a new trend. 📈
If you are now convinced but you don’t know how to have a 3D website, Naker has created a very simple to use a 3D editor to allow you to be part of this future. Contact us!