In 2017, we saw some of the most crucial web design trends since the birth of the internet, from non-traditional navigation to heroic imagery. True enough, patterns are known to change in all creative fields, with web design being no different. About this forever growing field, we’ve put together what we believe are the ten most important trends to monitor in web design over the next year.
WIDER USE OF MOBILE-FIRST APPROACH
We predict that designing for mobiles before larger screens will be a trend in 2018. While this trend won’t be new to 2018, mobile phones have now been officially named as the primary devices used for browsing the web. Therefore more companies realize how important it is to deliver effective and quality content for a smaller screen.
Utilization OF PROTOTYPING TOOLS
Even though this isn’t a design trend per se, prototyping tools are certainly one of the most useful revolutions in web design this year. Therefore, we predict that it will become even more popular next year. A prototyping tool is a must-have for any web, UI, and UX designer. Ultimately these tools allow designers to create working low quickly and high fidelity prototypes of sites and services to gauge their usability and aesthetics. Plus, this is all executed without writing a single line of code.
Illustrations are brilliant, versatile mediums that create friendly visuals to add an element of fun to a site. With a unique style of painting, brands can roll it out through their entire identity. This can then be used in large header images, custom iconography, and animated visuals. Some trends are unique to the illustration itself, although we highly anticipate that companies will be using them even more over the next coming months as a way of bringing their branding to life.
This may be one of the biggest trends on this list; photography. Photography will be a keeper within web design and generally in design. Unlucky for users, it will probably be a long time before cringe photography completely disappears; however, expect stock imagery to be a little less popular as of next year.
VIDEO TAKES OVER
The saying goes, ‘a picture paints a thousand words,’ but we could determine videos as doing that tenfold. Similarly to animation, a moving image automatically captures the attention of a user. Even though the video is far from new, it is a versatile medium, used for marketing, storytelling, and has a more modern twist on traditional photography. Because of this, that video is quickly taking over the internet, and the above reasons are precisely why it is going to become an even more significant trend in 2018. Encouraging higher levels of engagement, we are finding that many online authorities are giving more weight to video, with Facebook, Twitter, and Google, to name but a few.
BRILLIANT SCROLLING AND PARALLAX
Used for getting from the top to the bottom of the page, scrolling is used to deliver great content online. Traditionally, we’ve seen designers hugely concentrating on keeping the most relevant content ‘above the fold.’ However, we’re now seeing this old fashioned design disappear, with ‘the fold’ being a lot more challenging to define. Of course, this is due to users viewing content on screens of all sizes, with ultimately incompatible ways of searching for something. While scrolling is a versatile mechanic, it has many applications, and if poorly executed, it can lead to disastrous usability. We envisage that when designers experiment even more with scrolling in 2018, it’ll be something that gets better and better, adding even more levels of interaction.
We also see developments in how parallax is being used online. Known for being a scrolling mechanic, a parallax gives a 3D effect as the foreground moves faster than the background. Utilized as a visual tool, a parallax provides a sense of depth and ultimately lifts elements of the screen. With content creation happening more than ever, we predict that the cleverness of scrolling and parallax will be implemented more and more online, with designers getting massively creative with the way they are used.
IMPLEMENTATION OF RESPONSIVE DESIGN
We know what you are thinking, some of these trends aren’t new for 2018! Though, in the next 12 months, we do predict massive growth in the number of brands that build responsive-based sites. For those of you who haven’t heard of responsive design before, it’s an approach to building a website using CSS media queries and flexible layouts to design one single, dynamic site. It then adjusts the way it displays content according to which device it’s being viewed on. Similarly, to our mobile-first trend, we predict a vast increase in the number of brands that implement this. Ultimately companies will be using responsive design to achieve the ranking they want, keeping customers happy and well-informed with their online experience.
DESIGN FRAMEWORKS AND UI PATTERNS
We are starting to see an increased number of UI and UX patterns emerge across the internet. With so much online competition between brands, they can’t afford to take a lot of risks according to the user journey. So, if these tried-and-tested principles work, why change them? However, as these UI and UX patterns evolve, we predict that we’ll see even more brands get creative with them. Brands are doing away with design gimmicks to compete, concentrating on the consistent online browsing experience.
Who doesn’t love a bit of beautifully placed typography? It is known for being a powerful medium, able to create personality, draw emotion, and set an atmosphere. As devices continue to develop, brands are expected to push the limits of typography even further, appealing to users and ultimately attracting more customers. Designers love working with bold and beautiful typography, and so users should expect to see more unique, hand-rendered typography to layer and work with parallax and scrolling designs.
2018 is the year for super courageous colors online. In the past, brands have tended to stick to what we call ‘web-safe colors,’ but with technological advancements, we predict reproductions of super-rich colors next year. The use of bolder colors in web design actively attracts users’ attention, which is a massive change from the previously established, ‘safer-bet.’ Therefore, our 10th web design prediction for 2018 is, expect to see more vivid colour palettes online. Additionally, expect to see brands be a little more creative with colour according to their identity, with start-ups in articular being more vibrant in the hope of gaining more attention.
So there we have it, our top 10 web design predictions for 2018. While there are hundreds of ‘trends’ going on in every creative industry, it is hard to pinpoint the most important ones. However, we really do believe that the above are some of the more core trends to shine in 2018 and beyond.
If you are looking to create a site or roll out a redesign this year, be sure to contact the Gomie Design team today. With a team of professionals paired with competitive pricing, we will be sure to cater to your web design needs.