Modern web design is always evolving and new web design trends are always popping up. The trends for this year are very noticeable and interesting, even if some of them might not be up your alley.
Websites designed to be as fast as possible is also a universal trend happening in general, but that should be every website’s priority, and hosting also plays a part in this, so it was not included in this article. Just note that if your website’s performance is poor – no design elements will make your users stay on the site.
The other thing to know is that using any of these design trends is not necessarily going to bring in more viewers or increase viewer retention. But if it fits with your content, it will definitely improve the user experience of your website.
The importance of design
Design is the first thing a user sees on a website. It’s the first thought he has in relation to the website. If the design is memorable, that will greatly increase the chance of the user spending more time on the website.
But the visuals are not the only thing that matters. Speed is always the most important detail when it comes to user experience. If a website is slow, the user will most likely not wait for it to load. Again, hosting does play a big part in this, so choose your provider very wisely.
Trend #1 - Video
Video has been trying to replace written media for some time now. If you’re reading this, it hasn’t been fully successful, but it is definitely trying. At first, Youtube was the only popular video network, but now Instagram joined the game with IGTV, which removes the Instagram video restrictions.
It’s never too late to start using video, this design trend is mostly popularized by adding video material to your website. The video can be embedded like on some ClickFunnels or it can be integrated as the background, making it that much more immersive.
Facebook and Instagram have joined the video game for a reason. The autoplay feature on their apps isn’t for naught. If a video captures your attention within the first few seconds, you’ll continue watching it, maybe even watch it till the end.
Adding videos to a website has become so easy with the ready-made embed code and WordPress plugins that will give you a video background with only a few clicks.
So if having video material suits your style – you should definitely consider it.
Trend #2 - Heavy Focus on Mobile
The number of mobile users keeps on rising, and there are numerous people that only use mobile. More than 50% of the page visits come from mobile, that number has been rapidly growing since 2009. And it won’t stop.
Google now tests websites if they’re mobile-ready, so to rank high in Google search, you’d need to have a mobile-ready website.
How can you make your site mobile-friendly? First, make your website responsive (many conventional website builders and templates got you covered here). Make sure that all the buttons, internal links, and other clickable information are bigger. If a user can’t click a button without zooming in – that’s bad user experience.
Additionally, compress the size of photos and other files for better loading speeds. Your goal is to make your website as convenient as possible for mobile browsers.
Trend #3 - Unconventional Geometric Shapes
Any shape that is uneven or irregular is unconventional. This website design trend is brought on by designers seeking to implement some eye-catching elements, without actually hurting the website’s design quality.
For example, shapes that would usually be rectangles or circles are made into triangles instead. It might limit visibility a little, but it gives the website an imperfect look, a very unique feature that greatly differs from most other websites.
Trend #4 - Chatbots
Chatbots were a thing even two years ago, but they’re gonna get a lot more popular in the future. The main change that happened to empower chatbots is AI. AI has continued to improve, to the point that it can clearly understand humans.
Out of all the website design trends, this one is the hardest to implement, it requires heavy coding and smart usage of AI.
The next things to work on are personalization, contextualization and specialized chatbots. By specialized chatbots, I mean chatbots designed to serve a specific purpose, like advise the user on which phone to buy.
Voice chatbots are also making a popular, with Google Duplex leading at the moment. They use NLP (Natural Language Processing) to try to sound like a normal human. For now, Google Duplex can book restaurants, but not much more.
Trend #5 - Minimalism
Minimalism has been a top contender in website design trends in the past and it’s now making a comeback. It’s mainly characterized by overly simplistic design, but still providing enough detail. It’s the embodiment of the “less is more” proverb.
The goal is to enable the user to consume the information by using the least energy possible and without any distractions. This is achieved by using as little elements as possible.
Minimalism could be achieved by simplifying the website’s colour scheme and removing the unnecessary elements for a clean look.
Trend #6 - Mini-animations
These little interactions bring more life to a website. They can be implemented into any web design style, and will definitely increase viewer retention.
These can be simple, like a changing picture on mouseover, graying out something on mouseover, a highlight or basically anything.
Mini-animations add visual interest and playfulness to the page.
Trend #7 - One-page scrollable websites
This design trend started to gain popularity a few years ago. It’s not getting used a lot more though, there are even platforms like Carrd that can build only one-page scrollable websites.
The attractive thing with these websites is that there is no page loading time, users only have to wait for the initial load and then everything is instantaneous.
Another implementation of this design feature is infinite scrolling, which will enable the user to keep loading photos or posts without having to refresh the website or click “Next”. It’s making it much more bearable for the user, as the user now only needs to scroll. The load time is taken out of the equation, which means more viewer retention.
Trend #8 - Asymmetrical design
Symmetrical websites usually use a grid style layout, where you can easily point out the grid. It’s using straight horizontal and vertical lines to nicely tidy up the website.
The asymmetrical design is the opposite of that. This design pattern features a broken grid and elements that seem to be out of place. This design layout is visually more interesting and unexpected when compared to the grid layout.
A normal grid-style layout can be ordered only one way. This design trend allows people to bypass that limit and order the elements as they see fit, not only in straight vertical and horizontal lines.
Experiment with Your Website Design
A good design is paramount to the success of a website. Great design paired with speed is what could get your viewer retention through the roof. That doesn’t have to be very hard to achieve. Some of the before design trends already help with speed optimizations.
Finally, these website design trends won’t fit all the websites. It’s up to the choice of the website owner. It is recommended to try at least one of these in your next website building voyage.
Then again, you don’t have to follow any design trends. Create your own, experiment. But make sure your website is speedy with great web hosting and efficient code.