When you set out to build a website for your resume, one of the primary goals is to stand out among your peers and get noticed. With so many websites created on a daily basis, it’s tough to beat the competition.
But, there is a way to make your website more memorable and add personality to your brand. The quickest way to do that is to make your resume website more interactive.
An interactive website allows visitors to connect with your site more by taking simple actions, such as:
- filling out a form,
- sharing your content,
- clicking on a link,
- playing a slideshow,
- or scrolling through the interface.
In a nutshell, it requires visitors to interact with your content in some way, which makes your site more engaging and memorable.
Most websites nowadays have interactive elements—just think about all the times you filled out a comment form, submitted a poll, or even played a game. Even subtle animations and simple section transitions can add a level of elegant interactivity to your site.
In today’s post, we dig into the benefits of adding interactive elements to your website and detail how you can apply them to your own, personal resume website. Read on to learn how to make an interactive resume website that uses professional and creative techniques.
Why You Should Make Your Website Interactive
Creating an exact duplicate of your paper resume on a web page, by copying and pasting the text defeats the purpose of making a great personal resume website.
Following a meeting or interview, potential employers will turn to the almighty Google to find out more about you. They will land on your website expecting to uncover more. Offering them no additional information (beyond your paper resume) is not the way to make a good impression.
Instead, you want to give them more relevant information about you and do so through a professional, memorable experience. Adding interactive elements to your resume website and the right components helps you stand out.
Aside from making a good first impression on potential employers, here are additional, important reasons why you should make your resume website more interactive:
1. Encourages Visitor Engagement
By increasing visitor engagement, you’re giving them a chance to stay longer on your website and explore more of your content. Whether that’s by clicking on your portfolio links to see a slideshow of your recent projects or by scrolling through your timeline, anyone who visits your website will be more inclined to see what else you have to offer.
London-based web designer, Anders Jensen makes a good use of interactivity by adding little plus icons to his head and body which not only reveal his skills and passions but peek curiosity in visitors.
By opting for a horizontal layout, visitors are driven to engage with the information presented, and clickthrough each section of his resume site. Once they reach the final page, they can download his traditional resume or get in touch with him immediately.
2. Makes You More Remarkable
We mentioned before that making your website interactive helps you stand out more. The more unique your website, the more memorable it is which is exactly what you want to achieve.
Take a look at Robby Leonardi’s interactive resume above. It’s a prime example of an extremely interactive website that prompts visitors to scroll and then turns into a Super Mario type game. The website simply begs you to keep scrolling to see his skills and education, until you reach the contact form at the end. Even without the use of text, it’s clear what the intent of the website is.
3. Shows Your Personality
A personal website is an online extension of you. It does an excellent job of showing your personality and conveys a lot about the type of person you are. This is reflected in the color selection as well as the language you use.
Your choice of interactive elements plays the same role, and one of the best examples to showcase is An-ni Wang’s resume. Through animation, she shows what a day in a developer’s life looks like, which also reveals little bits and pieces about her through well-chosen graphics. She has a unique personal brand, and lets it shine throughout the entire website.
4. Offers a Better User Experience
Simply put, an interactive website offers a better and richer user experience because visitors can directly interact and engage with the content, either via clicking your email address to send you an email, downloading your resume, clicking on links to view your projects, or scrolling through the timeline representing your education.
It’s as close as they can get to personally interacting with you before making actual contact. Integrate subtle interactivity with your personal brand and you have a powerful combination.
Make Your Own Interactive Resume Theme (Quickly)
If you don't have the time and dev skills to make a great interactive site, like those featured above, that okay. You can instead use a WordPress resume theme to build your interactive website with and get professional results. Find great personal site themes and discover how to make an interactive resume quickly:
- WordPress Themes20 Best WordPress Resume Themes: For Your Personal WebsiteBrenda Barron
- ResumesHow to Make a Personal Resume Website: From a WordPress ThemeBrenda Barron
9 Ways to Make Your Website More Interactive
The examples mentioned above show a complex degree of interactivity, mainly because they represent the resumes of web developers and designers. Aside from making them stand out, it also shows off their skills. But, that doesn’t mean that the rest of us have to settle for boring and static resumes. Here’s how you can add interactivity to your website, even without coding skills:
1. Add a Video
Video is one of the most popular mediums today, and it allows anyone who lands on your website to instantly get a sense of your personality. You can use it as a welcome video to share a personal message with your visitors, or you can add it as a subtle background animation in the header on any other part of your website.
You can also use video to showcase your past work by talking about the specifics of notable projects or even share video testimonials from past employers or team members.
Don’t forget that you can opt for video posts on your blog along with the standard written posts. It’s an interesting way of keeping visitors updated with how your job search is going and it gives potential employers another way to get a feel for your determination and drive.
Seymour Powell, a product designer, uses a subtle video background to add interest to his website.
2. Blog Regularly
One of the best things you can do for your resume website is to add a blog. Use it as a place to share news about your industry, offer tips of the trade, and write case studies about your previous work.
A regularly updated blog shows potential employers that you have a thorough knowledge of your particular field, and it also encourages others to participate in a conversation through comments. And it helps your site to be more visible to search engines, which makes it easier for recruiters to land on your website when they are in search of fresh talent.
Rachel’s website uses subtle animation to bring attention to her content, and she maintains a blog which adds to her credibility as a writer.
3. Turn Email and Phone Numbers Into Clickable Links
It goes without saying that your resume website should have contact information or even a contact form so anyone can send you a message straight from your website. Even if you choose to forego the contact form to avoid spam messages, it pays to turn your email address and your phone number into a clickable link.
Doing so will launch the visitor’s email client immediately when they click on it which saves them the hassle of having to copy your email and remembering to email you for a potential interview. Similarly, clicking on the phone number allows visitors on mobile devices to call you right then and there.
4. Add Subtle Animation Effects
You don’t have to be a developer to add animation effects and parallax transitions to your website. There are plenty of templates online, including WordPress themes that allow you to show your skills in a visually engaging way.
With one of those templates, you can use circle counters or progress bars to show your skill level. You can also choose a theme with a parallax effect to make different sections on your website more appealing.
Some of them even offer a way to display your resume as an animated timeline to break away from the paper medium and add interest.
5. Use Social Sharing Buttons
Finding employment is no easy task, but you can make use of social sharing buttons and ask anyone who visits your site share it with their audience, which helps you spread the word.
Your friends and family will have a quick and convenient way of sharing your website, so be sure to mention it to them. You can also consider adding your tweets or your Facebook page widget to your website so visitors can send you a tweet or like your page without leaving your site.
6. Start a Podcast
If you’re not comfortable with video, why not make use of audio posts by starting a podcast documenting your journey? By publishing your podcast to iTunes or SoundCloud you can reach a new audience. And you can embed your podcast right into your personal website. Who knows, maybe that’s an opportunity for you right there?
On top of that, a podcast offers visitors a more personal way to get to know you better. It’s a remarkable way to who your personality and grow your personal brand.
7. Show Your Past Work With a Slideshow
Instead of using images as thumbnails to share past projects, consider turning them into an interactive slideshow. You can achieve this by having the images open in a lightbox and visitors can use their keyboard to scroll and see all of them. Or, you can add a fullscreen slideshow in the header.
Björn Meier opted for the latter approach, showing his furniture designs in a stunning header slideshow. He also uses accordions to list his projects which reveal more details about his work once you click on them.
8. Add a Live Chat
Now, before you shake your head in disbelief and go on thinking Live Chat is reserved for e-commerce or other support-based websites, hear me out.
Live Chat serves as an immediate point of contact, even faster than sending you an email or a message through your contact form. It’s a great way to stand out among your peers and employers can use it to schedule an interview with you right from your website.
There are many services that allow you to integrate a live chat with your website and a host of WordPress plugins that do the same. Most of them have the functionality to email you in case you’re offline or cannot reply to the message immediately. Visitors are still able to leave a message in that case, so you can follow up with them and ensure their questions get answered.
For a little inspiration, take a look at how Colin Leverger uses Live Chat on his website, right alongside other contact methods.
9. Add Appointment Scheduling
While you’re looking for a job, you know how important it is to schedule an interview, and you probably know that scheduling can sometimes be tricky, especially if you have a lot of interviews lined up.
Why not make it easier on recruiters and potential employers by embedding a calendar into your website that shows your availability and allows them to schedule an interview on the spot? You can block out your busy time slots and show only available times without revealing who you’re interviewing with.
This also allows you to avoid any conflicts and potential awkward moments if you’re interviewed by competing businesses.
Make a Great Impression With an Interactive Resume Website
A little interactivity goes a long way to making your resume site memorable and unique. Not only do you have better chances of making an excellent impression on HR managers, but you’re also taking the first steps toward building an outstanding personal brand.
On top of that, you’re also encouraging other visitors to engage with your website. This leads to establishing new connections that might help you in your job search or even lead to hiring you for their project in the meantime.
Fortunately, making your resume site interactive is not as hard as it used to be. Take a look at our collection of the best resume WordPress themes to find the one that fits your brand best. Use it to quickly build an amazing interactive resume website that will impress potential employers and help you secure a job interview.