👀 97% of consumers research their purchases online before they buy something.  This is evidence that today’s web visitors are more critical and savvier than ever. And, they’re only growing more so, as the generations who have grown up with smartphones and with internet access represent a larger percentage of the population.

Your brand’s reputation, your bottom line, and your future are dependent upon bleeding edge web design.

This article is written to highlight prevailing web design trends that we believe could be insightful to various businesses.

With that said, let’s explore some of today’s hot trends for website design, and which trends may support your business objectives.

✅ Attention-Grabbing LARGE Titles

It’s well noted in today’s rushed and want it now culture, users seem to have less and less time to spend on websites. With this mind, design interface is adapting to include large, bolded titles and shortened messaging to capture their audiences fast with the objective of improved engagement leading towards more and faster conversions.

Here’s an example.

Himalaya

Himalaya uses a video background to accentuate the natural genesis of their products.

The use of color and a heavy font weight gets the job done. The headline and moving background work cohesively.

 

Website Design - Large Titles

✅ Flat Design

Flat Design is a minimalist design approach that features the use of clean and open space, bright colors, and simple two-dimensional illustrations.

The popularity of flat design can be attributed to the need for fast-loading websites that provide users with an enjoyable browsing experience on both mobile and desktop.

This style of design started off as just another trend, but over the years, it’s grown to become the standard for web design.

Flat design uses simple graphics and images.  This means an overall much quicker loading time.

This style of site is also preferred by many users from a user experience perspective.

Reducing the clutter and unnecessary decorative parts of a design helps users to focus on the important parts and make it easier to navigate.

✅ Benefits of white space

Imagine walking into a house where each room is overflowing with high-end furniture, expensive knick-knacks, gaudy accouterments, and racks of couture fashion.

The feeling is chaotic with a sense of being lost.

Now, imagine walking into a home with wide open spaces, and warm, inviting light – a home with several tasteful pieces of furniture, and a few hand-selected knick-knacks on display. Perhaps more inviting?

Fresh, clean, minimalist design is in and visual clutter is out.

The reason is simple: designs with plenty of white space are easier to read and navigate.

Leaving lots of white space also makes it easier to direct focus on the most important elements on the page.

White space is the portion of a page that is left empty.

Technically, it doesn’t even have to be white – it just needs to be devoid of copy, graphics or photos.

Today’s website visitors are content-scanners. They scroll quickly, skim posts, and get distracted by busy layouts trying to accomplish too much. Effective use of whitespace is the key to getting your visitors’ full attention.

Intentionally blank areas aren’t just aesthetically pleasing — they actually have a big impact on how our brains take in and process new material. Too much information or visual data crammed into a small, busy space can cause cognitive fatigue. Essentially to our brains, it’s information overload, which results the inability to assimilate information.

Check out the example below from Digital Ink:

The layout on the left uses the vast majority of available space.

web design white space

 

In contrast, the layout on the right uses wider columns and more distance between paragraphs. This simple design shift that has a major impact on making the article look more approachable and readable.

The continued push to create a better user experience and stronger conversions, white space will become even more important

✅ Integrated video

People are in love with video! Right!?!

Video can capture our attention like no other form of media.

Additionally, video can boost your SEO ratings.

Google measures how much time viewers spend on your web page to help determine its value. The more time spent, the better the rating.

Videos increase engagement and encourage people to spend more time on your website.

This is why video is strategic web design tactic.

Curated short videos or animations are created and integrated design elements. These video elements engage viewers, enhancing the user experience for them and could yield higher SEO ranking for your business.

Robust User Interface (UI) /User Experience (UX) design

Today’s web users expect a impeccable online experience when visiting your website. And failure to meet that expectation can result in a lost opportunity business.

A recent study from Forrester Research reveals that proficient UI design could increase your web conversions by up to 200%. According to the study, a strong user experience can increase conversion rates up to 400%.

This means that poor UI/UX is turning away a lot of potential sales.

That’s why user interface and user experience design are vitally important.

✅ Enhanced responsive design and mobile apps integration

Let’s consider how people search for something.

👉 According to Google, over 48% of all users started their search for something on a mobile device.

Starting in 2016, more users access the internet from their mobile devices than from their laptops or PCs.

Mobile devices are the most popular way to access the internet and your web design needs to support mobile users.

According to research by ComScore, mobile users spend more than double the minutes online than desktop users.

Need another reason to go responsive?

Here’s one: Google penalizes sites that are not mobile-friendly in its search results. As the company stated:

“…we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact on our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high-quality search results that are optimized for their devices.”

Every business needs to optimize their website for mobile devices.

Businesses will lose prospective customers unless they are providing a strong mobile user experience.

This is why responsive design and mobile apps are hot items when it comes to website design.

Responsive Design

Responsive web design adapts to the size and shape of the device screen used to view your site.

a great user experience for everyone who visits your website is provided by well-executed responsive design.

Mobile Apps

Mobile apps (short for “applications”) are programs designed specifically to be used on mobile devices.

They started as stand-alone applications for mobile devices. But, today, businesses are working hard to integrate the user experience on their mobile apps with their primary websites. Customers have come to expect this sort of seamless integration.

Some businesses rely on their website as their primary service. These web applications aren’t just a hub for information or even just an online store. They are complex websites with layers of user interface.

Websites this complex may be difficult to translate effectively for mobile devices with only responsive design. That’s where a dedicated mobile app can save the day.

You can also expect to see more and more businesses launching apps that allow users to move easily from app to website and back while maintaining the user’s account information and (of course) consistent visual brand design.

✅ Animated GIFs

Today’s consumer is in an “instant gratification” mindset when it comes to finding the information they’re looking for.

We only have a small opportunity to capture their attention and provide them with what they’re looking for.

This is where animated GIFs can be beneficial.

While being engaging and entertaining, GIFs can convey complex ideas in a short period of time. Additionally, they also work on most browsers and mobile devices, making them accessible to everyone.

In the example below CarLens, a car identification app uses an animated GIF in its hero section. The GIF is engaging, quickly shows the type of information you can find about a car and makes users interested to learn more.

GIF example - Website Trends

✅ Automated Bots & Machine Learning

Over the past year chatting with bots and machine learning on websites has evolved. We’ve seen significant advancements in artificial intelligence and the capabilities of bots.

For example, think about when Google gives us auto-suggestions or when Facebook asks us if we would like to be tagged in a photo.

Many companies are seeing the benefits bots can bring to their organization including:

  • Greater convenience by giving users instant responses and filtering them to the appropriate contact based on their issues
  • Greater conversions for sales related activities
  • Improved efficiency by allowing for easier and time-saving transitions between cases.

In Summary

Your website is a critical element of your brand, and as your brand and marketing strategy evolves, your site should as well.

Aesthetically websites, in general, will continue to move towards the clean and practical style of flat design. Companies will make a push to make their sites accessible for everyone and employing more conversational bots to give users a quicker response time

Your website and your brand should work in unison. A misalignment can damage not only your brand but also your customer’s trust.

There are many millions of websites online. The only way to stand out is to create a website that’s unique, different, mobile friendly and efficient.

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