In today’s world, technology is moving at an extremely fast pace. These technological advancements have affected most of the areas of our lives. Web design is one of these areas, with web designers trying to come up with websites that can meet their customers’ needs or risk losing them to competitors.
While some web design trends that have been on the market for some years now continue to be used, there are major shifts especially for the year 2018. As consumers continue to demand better quality and more responsive websites, web designers will resort to web design trends that maximize the user experience and that satisfy a consumer’s needs in the least time possible. Some of the web design trends that will make or break in 2018 include:
1. Mobile-friendly website
The mobile market is officially the biggest market, having overtaken desktop browsing in 2017. This makes creating responsive and mobile friendly website one of the biggest trends of the year. Web designers will shift from a focus on the desktop experience to a focus on the mobile experience as more consumers access their websites from smartphones and tablets. Google has even rolled out its new indexing protocol which is a mobile-first indexing. This means that websites will be ranked based on their mobile version, further underlining the importance of a responsive website.
This year, more brands will turn to animations to convey their brands to the public on their websites. The use of animations has been one that has been trending, but this will be the year it takes center stage. Animations give a website a unique opportunity to communicate a message in a short time and in the simplest of ways. As consumers seek to spend the least amount of time learning about a brand, animations will be the perfect tool to utilize as a website. They give personality to a brand and make it look dynamic.
3. Bold and expressive colors
The days when websites were dull and only used dark colors are long gone. The new era of web design is filled with bright, vibrant and adventurous colors. New tools are now available that allow web designers to experiment with different colors to convey a particular message about a brand. When coupled with customization features, vibrant colors can provide a truly unique website that stands out from the pack.
4. Unique typography
Some web designers have been experimenting with unique typography, and this trend is expected to become mainstream this year. Daring and bold typography emphasizes the text on the website it’s used on and also attracts the eye of the user. While images have been the design feature of choice for that eye-catching effect, they slow down the performance of a website, especially for mobile users. This makes artistic and unique typography the new default favorite feature for the year 2018.
For the longest time, stock images and custom photographs have been dominant in the web design world. Stock images are easy to use while custom photographs bring in uniqueness to the website. However, this is slowly changing, with illustrations being the hottest trend right now. This year, illustrations are expected to become even more dominant owing to the unique perspective they bring to a website. Hand drawn illustrations are becoming very popular in particular. They inject personality and a human perspective to a website and make a brad stand out from its peers.
6. Use of chatbots
Artificial intelligence is fast becoming part of our daily lives, from our smart cars to our smart homes. Web design is not lagging behind on the use of AI as well, with chatbots being one of the most popular uses of AI in web design. Chatbots have become very popular, with many companies making use of them on their websites to handle most routine tasks. Chatbots are able to respond to customer complaints and questions, any time of day or night. They can also recommend products to customers, depending on their web history or past purchases as well as collect and analyze data which the company can use to offer better services to their customers.
7. Creative page transitions
Page transitions are the same boring and uneventful thing, whether you are shopping on Amazon or catching up with the weekend sports on ESPN. The transitions are just a momentary loading when the page goes blank for a minute and then the new page loads. This will see a huge change in 2018, with web designers resorting to more expressive and creative transitions. These transitions are already in use in a few websites and they have attracted a lot of attention with many users being impressed. Designers will focus on these new transitions which capture the attention of the user in order to stand out from the crowd.
8. Organic and fluid shapes
For a long time, web design has relied on sharp-edged shapes with right angles that adhered strictly to geometry. However, this trend is being continuously challenged and slowly being phased out. In 2018, the emergence of more fluid shapes in web design will become prevalent and take over from the geometric shapes. While the sharp-edged shapes have their advantages such as collection of information into easily manageable segments, they are not as appealing and they are quite monotonous. Web designers will experiment widely with unconventional shapes in 2018 as they seek to make their websites eye-catching and appealing to their users.
9. Use of cinemagraphs
Cinemagraphs are still photographs in which a minor movement occurs repeatedly, usually of a secondary element in the photograph. Cinemagraphs have become extremely popular especially with retail websites and are slowly taking over. They capture the interest of the user very quickly and draw his attention to specific areas of interest. They have already been proven to have a higher conversion rate than still photographs which is why they are a favorite for retail websites. They will become mainstream in 2018 as more web designers turn to them for maximum customer engagement.
10. Creative navigation menus
This is yet another trend that picked up in late 2017 and will become a mainstay in 2018. Navigation menus have for the longest time been fixed in a bid to simplify the experience of the users. This is however being challenged by creative web designers who are detaching the navigation menu and having fun with it while at the same time introducing a unique aspect to the site. One of the most popular twists has been adding a drop shadow to the navigation bar and moving it below the top of the site. This creates the feeling that the navigation bar is a feature available from any part of the site, not just on the homepage.
Written by: stevekaaru