Sometimes it can feel like web design trends change in the blink of an eye. Here today, gone tomorrow. From darling of the ball to being kicked to the curb the next morning. With new techniques and tools being introduced on a daily basis, having a website that stays relevant can seem like an uphill battle. What I like to look out for are trends that find the right balance between creativity and functionality – when they get this right, they’ll be the ones to become lasting change. Saying that, these are the web design trends that I believe are, and will be, defining the digital landscape in 2019 and beyond!
Video is a trend that is not going to go away anytime soon. Not only are our eyes automatically drawn to moving images – making it super effective at grabbing people’s attention – research also shows that we remember 95% of a message when watched versus only 10% when read. Video is so versatile too – you can tell a story, convey a space or scenery, demonstrate how something works, stir emotions.
I like how this website uses video background to show the different spaces in their coworking office and gives a sense of the vibe: https://creativequarter.net/en/
Pro tip: If you do decide to put a video background on your website, make sure you have a Content Delivery Network (CDN) to cut down on load time and have a transcript of your video to help with accessibility and SEO.
Micro animations are small movements that help focus the viewer’s attention or clarify navigation or interfaces without having to use any words. For example, if you have a hamburger icon change into an ‘x’ as you click to open it, it infers that clicking on it again will close it.
I love how this website uses micro animations to draw your eye to each section as you scroll down the page. And the way the cursor over the video changes from a play icon to a pause button after you click to start the video is also a nice touch: http://www.corvari.it/
Chat bots won’t be appropriate for all industries, but for certain product or service-oriented businesses, they can be helpful, as well as provide a more personal service to visitors. From a personal perspective, I would say that it can sometimes feel intrusive if the chat bots pop up when all I want to do is have a little browse around so a good practice would be to ask permission or allow the user to initiate the conversation.
Here are 10 of the most innovative chatbots on the market right now.
Image via Wizeline
Progressive Web Applications (PWAs)
It’s so important to provide a good website experience on all platforms – but it can be a tricky thing to do on mobile devices without investing a lot of time and money into developing a mobile app. PWAs have changed that. By using the same code base for every platform, PWAs can deliver an app-like experience to users right in their browsers.
This article has more on Progressive Web Apps and some cool examples.
Image from Google Developers
As I mentioned, the trends I like to follow are those that can bring functionality and design together and that includes usability for all. For example, using bright color palettes with high contrast levels is not only a trend that creates impact, it is helpful for those who are color blind. Another good trend to make into a habit is to include alt-tags on images and title tags for hyperlinks, which helps SEO as well as enables your website to be read by screen readers.
Broken Grid and Asymmetrical Design
Breaking out of the traditional grid that designers use for page layouts allows more space to play around, be creative and create something more unique and unexpected. The trick is to find a good balance – you can’t throw the grid out the window as you don’t want to run into development problems or have issues with different screen sizes but moving off it a bit can help give a website a fresher, less cookie-cutter feel.
This website (that we built) uses asymmetrical design with a nice subtle effect: http://www.diagnose-berlin.de/
Each of these design trends aren’t necessarily just about making your website look good, but about giving visitors a better website experience overall. If you really want your website to make a good impression, it’s worth considering how some of these trends could benefit your website. If you’re interested in exploring any of these trends or want to talk to someone about updating your own website, feel free to get in touch!