It’s 2018 and brands are all competing for the attention of their next consumer. To stand out above the rest, web designers are starting to push their limits and design outside of the box in order to grab the consumer and make their experience original and genuine. Check out these trends and reflect on how they can strengthen your business and cater to the consumer experience if implemented correctly:
- ·1 Shift to Mobile First Web Design – Smartphones have officially passed desktops in methods for browsing the internet. With more and more users on-the-go, companies will be forced to reconfigure their websites in order to cater to the mobile user. In 2018, Google will also be rolling out a mobile-first search indexing in which websites that are optimize for mobile use will rank higher in Google search results than those that are designed primarily for desktop use. There is not currently a hard date set for when mobile-first search indexing will go into effect, but it is expected to be a rolled out process throughout late 2018. To avoid falling behind on the search results page of the largest search engine in the world and turning off mobile users, it is crucial that businesses invest in an updated and mobile-friendly website.
- ·2 Use of Broken Grid Layouts – Though many companies are sticking to the traditional grid based layouts – largely due to the amount of content needed on their site, some brands will increasingly start to test the limits with unconventional layouts that shake up the typical user experience. Since a website is often times the first impression of a brand for a consumer, creating a unique and memorable website will draw in users and determine the likelihood of them returning – or converting – on a website.
- ·3 Integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) – There is undoubtedly a need for immediacy in two-way communication between consumers and businesses. With the implementation of AI platforms, namely chatbots, brands are able to stay in touch with their audiences 24/7. The more genuine the communication from the business’ side, the better. This may take a substantial investment in terms of time to get the system automated in a way that doesn’t seem so robotic, but from there it is simply maintaining and increasing consumer experience as time goes on.
- ·4 Use of Risky Color Combinations – Bold colors are growing to be very popular in web design in recent months – pushing the boundaries with combinations that do not necessarily make sense when looking at a complementary color wheel. This trend comes right alongside the risk-taking with layouts – it’s all about changing up a user’s experience so things do not seem so cookie cutter.
- ·5 Making Page Transitions a User Experience Matter – Typically when users click from one page to the next, there is a sudden jump that has never truly felt natural. Many websites are starting to implement page transitions that make the experience smooth and part of a brand’s story, sweeping users from one page to the next without losing their attention by being choppy.
- ·6 Comforting Users with Floating Navigation Bars – Menus have pretty much always been stuck to the top or side of a website, but some designers are starting to toy with the concept of withdrawing the navigation bar from the top or side of the screen and following the user from page to page, making access to information easier.
Websites should be viewed as the golden digital medium for connecting with consumers, so prioritizing their digital experience should be viewed as a way to illustrate the mission and values of a brand. In order to stay ahead of the competition in the digital sphere, companies are going to have to invest time and energy in to redesigning their site to meet and test the expanding boundaries of web design – and ultimately, user experience.
What other web design trends do you anticipate seeing in 2018? Comment below and share your thoughts with us!