Why do we often prefer social media over “regular” websites? One reason is that social media feels “alive” while most websites read like boring brochures. Social media is an experience that people savor and regular websites are lame by comparison.
When you post something funny on Facebook, and the “Likes” come pouring in, you know you’re not alone. It’s easy to see which of your friends are online and what they’re doing. When you read something you like, you can instantly give your stamp of approval and share your reaction with others.
By contrast, browsing a normal website can make you feel isolated. It’s hard to ask questions and it’s often impossible to give or receive feedback. You’re out there all alone with no one to turn to for help.
But recently, we noticed some websites are inserting Flash Polls into their content to interact with their visitors. This seems to be an effort to replicate certain aspects of the social media experience. It’s an approach that makes the experience of browsing a traditional website more personable, more interactive, and more engaging. Obviously, it’s not quite the same as the immersive social media experience but it fits with our goal to help site owners empathize with their visitors.
So what exactly is a Flash Poll?
Roughly, a Flash Poll is a widget that asks a simple question to the user. This question can be embedded within the normal flow of your site or it can take the form of a Popover. Typically, a Flash Poll is remains active for a very short period of time (perhaps maybe 24 hours) or it is displayed at random times. An example of a Flash Poll, as used by one of our clients, FitFixNow, is shown below.