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at our company we are struggling with the explanation of our product to our audience.

Context: Tech B2B company, based in Czechia, 80-90% Czech customers, the name of the product couldn't be changed.

We have tried it explained it via text (tonnes of text = useless nowadays), images (it doesn't work - tested with target audience). So I came up with an idea that we could set up a carousel with real use-case -> Step by step what is the product, how does it fill up the needs. The carousel would be placed on a product page, which is not homepage (I am aware of horrible carousels on homepage = reason why I am asking over here).

So my questions are - do you think that a carousel is suitable for explanation our product in 4-5 slides? Do you have any inspiration?

Personal pros:

  • could be interactive (I could get some data from users via the story such as email or send an event to AdWords/FB and retarget them with relevant ad)

  • simply explained our product

Personal cons:

  • afraid of uncommon usage of a carousel
  • users won't slide between slides -> they still don't know what they are buying
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Don't use a carousel. For anything.

The downsides of this deservedly maligned UI component are many, various, well-listed, and perhaps most succinctly (and ironically) summarized at http://shouldiuseacarousel.com/

The main upsides seem to be the ability to easily please multiple stakeholders, and to provide a 'get-out-of-jail' card for designers and developers in your position.

Use a long-page design to tell a story and invite scrolling

From the article The New Rules for Scrolling in Web Design

Shedding its old stigmas, scrolling is reinventing itself as a core interaction design element

And from Long Page Scrolling Designs That Work

Keeping the story contained to a single page helps preserve the seamlessness of the experience, and helps guard against key content possibly being missed, due to the linear nature of how long pages present content

An Approach

  1. Arrange your slides or pieces of content in a way that suggests a narrative, or at least some logical progression.
  2. Present these in a single long page, in a way that leverages the techniques of this design style that invites the user to scroll down the page.
  3. Avoid the temptation to complicate things with parallax effects and excessive animation. It's quite possible to design a static page that communicates to the user "scan, read, scroll, scan, read, scroll..."

It's not hard to find examples of this type of content. There are links in the articles linked above, and you can search for 'long page scrolling design examples'. A very simple example of a static page that relies on this technique is https://moz.com/products/pro

Don't hide your light behind a bushel, or your content behind a carousel - dennislees, 2017 ; )

  • Thank you for a fast reply! Do you think that scrolling part could be only the section on the product page? Let's suppose I have the wireframe with a static header with CTA, then 3 main benefits in circles and then this section (let's place the section into iframe / or any kind of window)? Is it really necessary to have scrolling explanation on a seperate page? – Michal N. Jul 13 '17 at 8:28
  • This is tricky to imagine from your description. If you used the built-in wireframing tool to add some visualizations to your question, it'd be much easier to make suggestions. – dennislees Jul 13 '17 at 12:57
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I completely agree with dennislees' answer, nothing to add to that.

I will just add another way of viewing at your problem.

The thing is: are you completely, utterly sure that showing how the product works is a differential in your product? The way of use will solve a need?

An example of this is:

tired of doing your laundry by hand? Try the new revolutionary invention, the washing machine!

The result would be the same (clean clothes), the difference is the way of using it, with a clear advantage.

However, in most cases, the way of use doesn't matter at all when selling a product or service. Instead, you should focus on the advantages of your product, what makes it different (features, price, etc). There's a reason why you don't see many sites showing how a product is used: because nobody cares. As a user, I'm NOT interested on how to brush my teeth. I'm interested in how white and healthy will they be, on how much ladies will like me, on how much people will admire me, whatever.

In short

There are many ways to sell a product. With very limited exceptions, How to use it is not one of those.

However, if you still feel like going that way, just follow the advice in dennislees' answer (you should follow it anyways since it applies to many different scenarios)

  • Thank you for reply Devin! Well, I figure out that it is necessary to explain how the product works because client's mindset is set to that they don’t know how to call the product, which they actually need. The main problem with this that our customers are aged 30+ and the name of our product is czech-english. I can’t change the name of the product. – Michal N. Jul 13 '17 at 8:23

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