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Predicting 2019 Website Trends
Visual impact with artistic intent
I think we’ll see a lot more broken grid or asymmetrical designs in 2019. While the grid works well, I’ve been seeing more designers play with offbeat angles and shapes to draw more attention to areas of the site. It’s ultra cool because it’s based on classical art techniques of focal points and visual balance! I also have been seeing a lot of depth in some of my favorite sites, making more flat designs come to life with a 3D or layered depth effect. This, combined with parallax or subtle animation, can be an exciting experience for the user.
Texture and animation for the win!
I think we’ll start to see more broken grid layouts and more layered elements. Layering elements and textures allows for more depth than you would see in a typical grid layout. Micro-animations will also become more prevalent; these subtle animations improve the user experience and helps validate the users’ interactions as they hover and click on elements. Video heroes will continue to be popular as they’ve shown to increase conversions.
Design will be about function. We’ll begin seeing mobile-first designs since traffic from mobile devices has been steadily increasing over the years. We’ll also see flat designs that ensure good web speed — at least on homepages.
Nice and easy does it.
Ah, predicting the future…if only that were in our grasp. We can, however, notice trends. With attention spans shorter than ever, a site needs to grab the user’s attention quickly. Videos/animations are the way to go. Have you noticed when scrolling through a site, a video will begin to play without the volume? In the past when the sound started automatically, I couldn’t get out of a site fast enough, but this is a great feature that draws me in without upsetting me.
With mobile use on the rise, quick and easy is the answer. Users want a site that loads quickly and is easy to maneuver through. Fewer buttons, less data, and quickly giving the user the info they want is key; then they’ll purchase, call, or put the address into their GPS and be on their way!
Focus on function…but don’t forget the form
Next year will certainly see a continuation of the more streamlined sites that we see today (better for speed and mobile users), but I think you’ll see designers trying to break the boxes. Most modern sites have a very similar section-by-section approach that more often than not come across as different sized squares or boxes. Good web designers (see Sylvia Foerster) put usability as their top priority, but their creative sides can’t help but crave more appealing designs as well. This will mean an evolution from the squares that you see everywhere today. Oh, and more blue people. Lots more blue people in 2019.
The need for speed…
Further focus on optimizing speed and a design that can accommodate all screen types. More animation and trying to hide “the grid” as the underlying supporting frameworks continue to improve.
Optimize for on-the-go, mobile users
There are so many directions to take when designing a website. What’s going to trigger customer satisfaction in the near future? Speed and simplicity. Most users are on their mobile phones when checking out information on websites. Website load time is key, which means, if your website isn’t loading properly, you’re going to lose them in just a few seconds. Lots of images will slow load time for your soon-to-be-customer, and we don’t want that to happen. So, simplistic designs are the direction of the future. Not only do simple designs help with load times, they can hold high SEO value! Use bright colors, some imagery, and simple illustrations with clean crisp font choices.
AI Generated Content
If we are not scoping this to the web, I predict that Augmented Reality (AR) is going to take hold of 2019 by storm; however, because you specifically asked about ‘website design trends’, I’d have to say my prediction is going to be more AI generated content.
Can you imagine a website wanting to engage with you based on your browsing behavior? I’ll just need to figure out how to opt-out of that too in addition to all the ads that show up across all of the web.
Color your world
I’ve noticed in recent searches I’m seeing a lot of movement, layers, bolder/larger fonts. Designers are including less text with more prominent graphics and larger scale images. The thing I’m most excited about is the use of color that seems to be coming into play. Neon hues and bold palettes in general I think are going to become the norm by 2019.
“Brevity is the soul of” a site…
It was interesting to see the wild excitement Parallax received a couple years ago, yet no one ever talks about it anymore. I guess one-pagers of constant scrolling is not as cool as everyone thought… or is it just me? KISS (keep it simple stupid) will always be one’s best bet. The less someone has to read, at least on the main pages, the better chance of maintaining one’s attention.
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