The anatomy of a website: Entireworld

For the sceptics who think the possibility of a metaverse is a fallacy, here’s something to chew over. On average, we appear to be spending 6 hours and 59 minutes daily consuming online content. If we accept that most individuals are awake for approximately 16 hours a day, this means a whopping 40% of our lives is being spent somewhere in a digital realm. Every single day.

It got me thinking about digital identities, of which there are many. For instance, the stamina I can apply to the infinite Instagram scroll, is a masterclass in exercising patience for the gratification of entertainment. It’s very different to the UX I expect from a utilitarian app like WhatsApp, where my most pragmatic self covets efficiency, with little concession to anyone fiddling with the familiar user interface. And then there are the instances when I’m willing to bend my mind a little for something new or left-field. Something that has remnants of pre-programmed behavior, but delivers something wholly satisfying, with evolutionary flair.

Entireworld falls squarely in this camp.

It’s pretty hard to find a commerce site that doesn’t deviate from the standard playbook, but I love their non-conforming user interface that encourages discovery and whimsy. It’s refreshing to see something novel that manages to still get you from intent to desired outcome, but builds these interesting micro experiences throughout the site.

Like the idea of gesture-based music each time you hover over a product image…

 

Playing the sort of ambient noise you’d encounter as you walking through a neighbourhood to get to a bricks and mortar store…

Or when the site tells me how many others I’m sharing this experience with… along with weather updates from across the globe…

Or the spontaneous applause you get when you put a product in your checkout basket…

 

The UX bible of web design comes with universally revered principles; know thy audience, thou shalt be consistent, usability and accessibility is king (as is context), and generally speaking, less is always more. And rightfully so in the context of an online store, where the singular goal is typically to get the customer from point A [browsing] to point B [sale]. However that doesn’t give us an excuse to ignore that bit in the middle. In other words, delighting customers with something playful and engaging.

Call this Marketing if you will, but for me, Entireworld was altogether something more alluring; the beginnings of a retail experience where the lines between reality and illusion, form and function, and utility and entertainment are starting to blur.


Image credits: theentireworld.com © 

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