When a new business is looking to establish its presence on the web, or an existing business is contemplating sprucing up their stale website, they should concentrate on usability, user experience and multi-device compatibility rather than chase the most recent web design trends. Having said that, to keep an eye on the trends in web design is important in order to understand why those new trends emerge, why they are adopted and how they can benefit your customer base along with your bottom line.
With all that in mind, let’s look at some important trends to be aware of in 2019:
In the past few years, we observed web design focus on minimalism and clean flat design. The same trends will continue this year. They are important because they remove the distraction and allow users to concentrate on your business’s Holy Grail – the content. The goal here is to make sure that design emphasizes the content that can be achieved with the help of distinct visual hierarchy (ex: large headings for more important content, larger call to action buttons), functional minimalism (removal of unnecessary design elements), and whitespace (adding more padding around the content and letting it stand out).
Intuitive (time-saving) design:
Intuitive design is something that designers use today that is more relevant and easy for users to consume. In today’s fast-paced world, consumers browsing the net for products and services are not going to waste their precious time to figure out how to navigate to a page they are interested in. Instead, they will move on to a website that offers a better user experience. To enhance the user experience, a website should have clear navigation, linear design, guidance, and smart personalization. Linear design is characterized by a fixed design structure that guides users through a set of actions from the beginning to the end (one example of linear design can be a landing page or a search form on the hero block – airbnb.com). Guidance and smart personalization are usually represented in the form of hints or direct suggestions (a simple example of guidance is a perceived need message accompanied by a call to action and an example of smart personalization can be product suggestions based on the user actions).
Device-agnostic UX and continuous digital experience:
With the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) devices in recent years, the mobile forward approach to web design is rapidly transitioning into a multi-device design. More and more users are looking for the experience that matches the context defined by their current device. It’s very important to evaluate your website design and your target market and ask if you need to redesign with the device-agnostic user experience in mind. Maybe you need to add an app to your set of sales/service tools, or if the mobile compatible web design provides sufficient continuous digital experience to move your business forward you can leave out the app for the time being.
Look beyond the use of photos:
More and more we start noticing the use of illustrations or photo-illustration collages in web design. Illustrations look awesome, they can be easily customized to your website color scheme and what’s more significant, they can be relatively small in size in comparison to the photos. A good example of the use of illustration is mailchimp.com.
Inclusive web design considers as many people’s needs and abilities as possible. It goes further than accessibility, which is specifically focused on people with disabilities and how to make sites or apps usable for them. (source: https://www.shopify.com/partners/blog/inclusive-design)
When talking about inclusive web design, businesses shouldn’t think only about permanent disabilities, there are people that suffer from temporary disabilities, recovering from surgeries or temporary incapacitation. Every business with online presence should take this fast emerging trend into serious consideration when designing or redesigning their website. It will not only make a website more useful and appealing, it will be reflected in the bottom line as well.
As everyone knows, trends are hard to follow, they come, they stay, they evolve. Most of the web design trends that stay are there to make people’s lives better and help businesses compete. We don’t need to chase every trend, but we do need to adopt the ones that will contribute to our business success.
<code>What We’ve Been Up To</code>
- Continued work on module additions and expansion of an international franchise operations platform
- User experience enhancements across several projects, both for public users and internal staff users
- By working closely with a client’s design team, OPG helped give job seekers a new place to search
- OPG has begun a number of new projects including an intranet, several new mobile apps, platform takeovers and expansions, data migrations, consulting and much more.
Yep, it’s been a busy month!