I'm currently working for a client on a site which offers search services. The users can rent modules that perform an action 24/7, namely searching an internal index for specific items. Each module can perform exactly one action. For example, if you want to do 4 searches simultaneously you would have to rent 4 modules. That's pretty much everything the site has to offer.
The modules come at very low prices; the first three are free and the user should be driven to rent more of them. Now, I had the idea to transform this abstract concept of modules into something more physical: cute animated robots.
The three robots would sit around doing their searching and eventually jump up and wave happily if they find something. I want to give them basic facial expressions so they feel real and the user can emotionally connect to them.
They should be so likable that the user wants to rent more of them and keep them.
Do you think this is a good idea for a business website? Taking away the abstract management of modules and making it more playful by interacting with "real intelligent robots". Can an emotional bond be established?
What are your experiences in keeping customers loyal by creating emotional bonds between them and the service?
Edit: The site is searching for car sales and is aimed at car dealers, that look for pre-owned cars online. The car dealers tell the bot what it should look for. As soon as someone wants to sale a car which matches the criteria, the bot will tell the car dealer.