When your website introduces something new, it helps to replicate the real-world or already-know appearance of its counterpart or something related. This design-technique is called skeuomorphism.
Here are some examples:
- The trash icon looks like a trash can
- Apple’s original note app looked like a notepad
- The mail app icon is an envelope
Clearly, this design tip leans on familiarity. Visitors have certain expectations and when you match them, you make life easier for them.
A more traditional way of using skeuomorphism is a call to action button that looks like an actual button with shiny colours and relief.