Trends are the well-known changes that take part in creative fields and web Design is not an exception. Trends have been the fuel behind change and are born of innovation and experimentation aimed at pushing industries forward. The World Wide Web is a special environment where change is constant and things are always evolving. With that in mind, the following are the top 8 web design trends 2017 will see.
More Sites Will Adopt The Mobile-First Approach
As this statement suggests, mobile-first designs are processes that make sure that sites are designed for mobile devices first then for the bigger desktop computer screens. The mobile-first design is not a new concept, actually, it has been around for a few years. The only reason it has made it to this list is the fact that it is expected that more brands will adopt it in 2017. The main reason behind this is the fact that more people are now accessing the internet using mobile devices. This is why companies are working hard to make sure they can deliver content to these small screens.
Since mobile phones come with screens smaller than computers and tablets, and the mobile-first design dictates that the designing process starts with these small devices, the site will have to get rid of the content that is unnecessary. We predict that 2017 will see more companies prioritizing smaller screen instead of taking them as secondary processes.
Improved Responsive Design Implementation
We know you are wondering why there is a mobile-first trend in 2017 and now the responsive design. As mentioned, trends are changes in a creative industry and it does not matter whether these changes are happening to a new or old process. Responsive design is a topic that has been around for quite a long time. What we expect to witness in 2017 and beyond is its increased adoption.
If you have no idea what a responsive design is, let us briefly explain. Responsive designs refer to when a website is build using flexible grids or layouts and CSS media queries. This results in a dynamic website which will adjust the content display to fit the device being used. Responsive design works closely with mobile-first because they both aim at improving the experience of users regardless of which device they are using to browse the net. The main reason most brands will want to go the responsive design path is because of the Google algorithms that will rank sites that optimize content better.
Use Of Rapid Prototyping Tools
Though not part of the web design per se, these tools are without a doubt some of the most useful tools to enter the world of web design within the last year and are some of the most important tools that UI, UX and web designers should have in their tool box. Services that provide rapid prototyping such as Marvel, Invision, Webflow and UXpin among others allow designers to create high and low site and service prototypes to check the aesthetics and usability. This is without the need of writing any code. These tools can allow the designer to create the site on the browser and launch it from the tool.
These changes will get rid of all the static mockups and wire-frames designers use to explain the process. The client will have a chance to see exactly how the system looks and how it works without the need for a long conversation that will end up confusing them. It is expected that more companies and sites will jump in the band wagon of using these tools all for improved efficiency and streamlined workflow.
UI Patterns and Frameworks
The responsive and mobile-first approach in the web design world and the popularity of WordPress has had a significant impact on how todays desktop sites look like and how they work. You can see an increased used of the UX and UI patterns emerging across the web with many sites working and looking alike. They are simply learning from each other to improve the user‘s experience.
We will not dive into the topic of sites becoming similar but we will like to highlight the fact that website are becoming consistently friendly to the user. There is a lot of competition online today and brands in different industry cannot afford to take a risk that will see then fall behind the changes in their industry. We predict that the current UX and UI patterns will evolve and develop further such that more companies will implement them and move an inch closer to a consistent experience for the user.
Ditching Stock And Focusing On Imagery Originality
As mentioned above, UI patterns are rising and are quickly replacing UX in most of the design processes. This simply means that sites will work and look similar and brands can now get rid of stock images, icons and videos. This is because they will have to be unique to stand out.
Most users are always looking for authenticity and stock images will not do well on a site. A brand will need to portray visuals and content that explains who they are and create a difference between them and the other brands in the industry. It is expected that brands will adopt, bespoke illustrations, attractive topography, and original photography. Users are tired of seeing the same businessmen smiling on every website they come across. It is expected that brands will look for different ways to make sure their site looks different.
An Advance In Animation
As languages and browsers advance, there is an emerging trend of sites using animation instead of the traditional static images. Personality and a story-telling approach is what brands are going for in an effort to capture the attention of users. Animation, courtesy of jQuery, CSS and HTML5 is playing a major role in this process.
Animation comes in all sizes and styles. Its flexibility is what makes it a popular method of communication by sites to users. This can range from little devices used to entertain users as the site or page loads to interesting features when the user hovers over links or images. Animation can be employed on a larger scale to create videos that will be the center of attraction on the website. In 2017, more brands will be looking at different ways they can use animation to their advantage and attract users to their site.
2016 has been a year for rich colors. Over the past few years, web designers have been using what can be referred to as safe colors. More and more brands are diving into braver colors that are out of the conventional list. You can expect 2017 to be painted with vibrant hues and colors that would normally not be used on sites. Using bolder colors can greatly help in the attraction of the user’s attention.
A good example is Spotify which has moved from the safe green color to a more vivid hue that is noticeable. Brands will also move towards using braver colors within their brand and identity with a hope of getting more attention from users in their target group
Creative Scrolling and Parallax
Scrolling has been used to move from top to bottom of web pages for a long time. Today, it is used in more innovative ways in the delivery of content. Since users are viewing the content on different screens, content delivery is very important. If there is a video playing, scrolling down will pause it. Static content that has been animated will change with the scrolling.
Content creation is expected to go a notch higher than ever witnessed and brands will need to find creative ways which will help in getting content to users.
There are hundreds of trends expected in 2017 and creativity is not about to stop in the web design world. Though it is a difficult affair to point at a single trend, we do believe that the above trends are some of the changes we should expected in 2017 and beyond. While not all these trends will apply to your case, it is important that you take a closer look at all that touch your site. It is also in your best interest that you stay informed and up to date with whatever is happening in the web design industry.