Everyone knows that technology moves so quickly that it’s hard to keep up to date on what trends are happening at any given moment. What might not be so obvious is the impact that not knowing what’s “trendy” can have on your website’s performance. The experts at CID are here to keep you educated:
Extremely Legible Typography
- A frequently overlooked aspect of design, Typography is defined as the “style and appearance of printed matter”. In the application of Web Design, Typography can be used for everything from defining a brand’s aesthetic to creating a more visually stunning landing page. In most recent past, the Typography trend that swept the web was the “tiny text”. You might remember seeing sites with small, almost illegible type, playing with the negative space and background. Quite adversely, this year is all about bold custom text, dramatic headers, and impacting content blocks, allowing your message to stand out.
- Increased Breathing Room
- When putting the building blocks in place for a website’s design, make sure to pad them with lots of negative space. The goal here is to allow your Typography and other design aspects really shine. By giving the design qualities and content blocks room to breathe, you allow the user focus to remain on the path you’ve charted for them.
- Make Mobile Your Top Priority
- As recently as a year or two ago, having a site that was mobile responsive was a benefit, but not a requirement. In 2017, mobile should be top of your list. Recent studies show that 68% of Americans browse the internet most accessibly from their mobile device. That number is even higher in the international market. These stats mean one thing: Mobile Responsiveness is mandatory to your internet success. While shrinking navigation and compressing design is important for functionality, going even deeper with mobile friendly design strategies will increase your conversions and help grow your business!
- Snack-Size and Full Screen Video
- Since Google purchased YouTube in 2006, the rise of video has come in leaps and bounds. Do you ever notice the multitude of auto-playing videos that you can’t avoid while scrolling through your social media outlets? Wouldn’t it be great if your business or brand had eye-catching videos that went viral just like those videos you see? These are the “bite-sized” videos intended to educate, share, and entice. Another route is to feature full-screen glossy videos on your website! Whichever route you decide, Google predicts that 74% of all web traffic will come from video, so start investing in your moving image.
- “Real” Photography
- If content is King, photos are Queen. Of course not all photography is created equal, and just like design trends, not all photo trends are still relevant. In 2017, the vote goes toward “real” photography. “Real” as in Natural, both in lighting and in staging. Integrating your products in a setting that’s believable and familiar could be the ticket to the branding goldmine you’ve been waiting for.
- Photo Centered Menus
- When your customers visit your site, it should be clear what you’re offering and where they need to click to find it. We’re using photo-centered menus to speak to any navigational questions they might have in a short period of time. These bold photo blocks behind navigation points leave nothing to the imagination when trying to locate a specific product or function. In doing this, we’re moving away from collapsible options, and moving toward a layout more rooted in visual design and flow.
- Bold Color Combos
- Dr. Seuss once wrote, “Why fit in when you were born to stand out?” Why not apply the same logic to your brand? One of the most visually exciting trends this year is the bold color combinations. Neon Orange and Aqua Blue, Black and Fire Hydrant Red, the list goes on. In combination with large, legible typography, you can bet that your message won’t be misinterpreted or ignored. You can navigate the users’ experience by grabbing their attention in the order that your vision dictates, guiding their way from interest to conversions.
- Let’s just call 2017 the “year of the GIF”. GIFs are EVERYWHERE; in your Facebook comment section, in your text messages, on Tumblr, in blog posts… And there’s a reason for that. GIFs are practical and simple, while still expressive. They also represent a moving option with shorter load times than standard video. Basically, they’re a miracle. We see them being used on Homepages as well as promotional banners to grab attention.
- Top Speed Load Times
- Speaking of load times, let’s keep them to a minimum. Google actually places sites with faster load times higher in search rankings. More than the SEO benefits, the user experience is dramatically less enjoyable if said user is waiting for your page to load AND is a leading cause of site or cart abandonment. For many sites, this is caused by “Site Bloat”: too much content, too many frills, too long to wait. While in the past, effects such as background videos, preloaded content, and parallax scrolling were popular attributes, a more simplified approach is driving conversions nowadays. Designers are leading with the attitude of “just because we can, doesn’t mean we should”. Just because something can be done, doesn’t mean it will enhance the user experience.
The Point Being…
Hiring a professional designer is more important than ever before. These elements add up to a current design culture that is increasingly in tune with its audience. With the ever-present competition that exists within every industry, it’s crucial to invest in your customers’ experience. The current state of marketing dictates that without a website possessing qualities that engage and attract your business is virtually anonymous. We can help to get your business noticed, schedule your free web presence consultation with Channel Islands Design today.
Coming Soon: What is UX/UI and why do I need to know?