What are web designers doing in 2018, and how can I leverage these trends to grow my business?
According to the Pew Research Center, 77% of Americans use the internet every day, which means that every 24 hours almost 250 million Americans are browsing the web to communicate, engage, explore, and shop online.
For most prospective customers, the first impression of your business they will likely have is through your website. And as with all first impressions, you only have a few seconds to engage positively with your visitors. If you can’t grab their attention immediately, you’ve lost your potential leads.
Not too long ago, websites needed to be simple and concise to properly function as lead generation tools, but advancements in technology mean websites can be more complex.
Here are some trends that are currently popular with web designers, all of which are responding to recent changes in how we consume media.
Showcase your brand with original imagery
Branding is one of the best ways to differentiate yourself from your competition. Web designers have been employing bolder graphics to create unique and engaging homepages to stand out from the crowd and wow their prospects.
Brands like Dropbox have recently embraced several new design trends, focusing heavily on bold graphics. These changes come amid a new branding for the file hosting service, and their newly redesigned landing page is much more engaging and interesting than their previous site.
Custom graphics gives your site a unique look, meaning visitors are more likely to remember your brand. You can also explain what your business specializes in with creative graphics, like Stride Creative. Their fun, colorful custom graphics immediately tell the visitor that this company is involved in teamwork and organization, which perfectly introduces a team communications service. The graphics also work to divide categories and fill white space while emphasizing the visual brand.
Graphics can also make your business feel more human; instead of stock images and a website similar to your competition’s, your website will have a personal, carefully-considered look that connects with your target audience.
Bold and contrasting colors
Color is also newly important in web design. Designers and web developers used to be limited to web-safe colors, but advancing graphics technology allows designers to use millions of colors as opposed to the original 216.
While many brands previously used monochromatic and minimalist color schemes to appear modern, many brands now embrace saturated, contrasting palettes.
Apple is known for its minimalist aesthetic, but recently their branding has included more bright, eye-catching colors. Spotify has a similar approach, combining their signature green-and-black palette with bold gradients, creating contrast without distracting from the product.
Of course, just throwing any bright colors onto a website is probably not going to be enough for a successful design. For more in-depth guidance on how to create an effective color scheme, here is a guide to to expand your knowledge, and build beautiful color palettes.
Thanks to faster browsers, you are no longer chained to static imagery for the sake of faster loading times. Now, web designers are embracing dynamic imagery to create eye-catching and engaging sites.
Animated scrolling, which manages to add another dimension to a site without distracting from content and branding, invite visitors to look through a site and discover content.
Anna Eshwood, a hairdressing academy and lookbook, uses multiple scrolling animations as well as moving graphics to emphasize the aesthetics of the brand. Not only does the site look good, it’s interesting to explore.
Although imagery is very important to a website, odds are your web content still relies heavily on text. Walls of text are now considered a deterrent to an effective website, so figuring out how, what, and where text is included on your site is key.
Using bold typography as a visual tool is becoming more popular in 2018. Non-traditional use of text allows you to speak to your visitor both literally with text and visually as a design element. French designer Benjamin Guedj relies on typography in his designs, managing to effectively employ bold, graphic text for a diverse variety of clients.
Choosing the right typeface is also important. Combining multiple fonts can help to emphasize information or break up different parts of a website, but choosing the right fonts can be difficult. Typewolf follows typography trends and can help you create an attractive, design-friendly combination of fonts.
Agence Play expertly combines these elements in their site for MUGS, a French restaurant. This site chose custom imagery, bright colors, engaging animations, and a variety of fonts to create a site that is not only functional but genuinely pleasant to browse. Most visitors would be engaged by a landing page like this, meaning they will continue to explore the site and are more likely to become customers.
Try incorporating some of these trends in your website launch or redesign. Each brand is unique and has their own needs, so make sure the changes you’re making are relevant to your business.
Thanks for reading,