6 Web Design Trends To Look Out For In 2019
A website isn’t something to be designed and left to stagnate for years. Design standards move quickly — faster today than ever before — and failing to keep up makes it harder and harder to compete with more forward-thinking competitors. If you don’t provide an optimized experience, visitors will likely choose to go elsewhere.
At the very least, that calls for anyone who wants their website to succeed (whether it’s for business or a personal project) to keep a close eye on developments in the design world. So if you’re doing just that, you’re in the right place. Let’s take a look at 6 web design trends that stand to be influential for the rest of 2019:
Video as a priority
Video is an incredibly powerful content type. It catches the eye more rapidly than text or standard imagery ever could, and reliably holds attention when executed well. While online video really hit the mainstream with the growth of YouTube, it has lagged as a design element for two main reasons: because companies don’t really know how to use it, and because videos are large files that can easily slow sites down.
In 2019, these issues are steadily evaporating. As a result of technological improvements, internet speeds and browsing devices are much faster, and it’s now viable to make video a core part of a website’s design. This is allowing businesses to experiment with it, often using smart video tools, and the more they experiment, the better the standard will become.
As desktop screen resolutions got higher, some website designers thought it prudent to cram more information and features into their pages. This can be useful for some users, certainly, but more users find it difficult to navigate on dense pages, and this problem only compounds when you move to mobile devices.
The average mobile device today may have the resolution to match an average desktop display, but that doesn’t make it any easier to read (or use) a button that renders at a fraction of an inch. This is partially why minimalist layouts — often not just minimal, but also sparse — are rising in popularity.
When the competition is trying to add as much as possible, you might find that it’s best to start taking things away. It could help elevate your digital brand: after all, businesses as brands was one of the abiding business trends of 2018 — and design plays a huge part in brand-building.
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Improved mobile designs
Just as the hero image doesn’t need to be the top of your website, the navigation doesn’t need to function as most navigations currently do. Think about the classic layout of the navigation bar at the top of the screen, sometimes remaining in place as you scroll down the screen. Think about the ubiquitous hamburger symbol that pervades almost every software suite, mobile app, and design guide. Does it really have to be used as it currently is?
In increasing numbers, designers are accepting that it doesn’t. In fact, it’s better positioned elsewhere. When you’re using a smartphone, does it feel natural to move your thumb to the top of the screen? Surely not. Position the hamburger symbol at the bottom of the screen, though, and you stand to have a much more intuitive experience. Freed from obligation to stick to old standards, this year should see a lot of change in mobile designs.
Limited color palettes
Having access to every color and shade that a modern display can render doesn’t present a mandate to use them all. Color schemes haven’t been too bad thus far, having mostly stuck to sets of three or four complementary tones, but designers are getting more experimental now — even dabbling in monochromatic or two-tone web designs.
How many colors does your website need to function, and to look good? Would it work better and be clearer with just white, black, and a vibrant color of your choice? When contrast is everything, and you’re under no obligation to be include every part of the rainbow, you can run with whatever configuration looks best for you.
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The death of the hero image
The classic hero image has been a staple of web design for years now. Conventional wisdom dictates that the first thing a site visitor should see is a big and glossy hero image to welcome them and clearly reflect their location, and it survived the move to mobile with ease. But more and more designers are realizing that they don’t have to take that route.
Instead of a hero image, you can use various smaller CTA-driven images, your main slogan, or even just your navigation menu. The function-driven world of ecommerce already does this well: see how retail giant eBay uses modest images (leaving room for the more search-relevant page copy to shine) with actionable links:
Image credit: https://www.ebay.com/
Alternatively, look at how alternative marketplace Flubit approaches things. Instead of product categories or links, it commits the bulk of the screen real-estate normally reserved for hero images to a simple category selection box and a search bar (with the key selling point of some items being cheaper than Amazon highlighted in the tick-box underneath).
Image credit: https://flubit.com/
Smarter user authentication
Recent years have seen numerous companies have issues with data security. Site visitor data gets leaked, businesses store it for questionable purposes, and security systems are vulnerable to exploitation. Meanwhile, plenty of sites are riddled with unnecessary forms and login processes that are clunky to say the least. User actions need to be as easy as possible.
What the web needs is smarter user authentication, and with the assistance of machine learning, we’re seeing it come to fruition. Think about social logins, for instance. Using one secured login, you can share your details with any supporting website — add on multi-factor authentication and you have a system that’s both secure and convenient.
These 6 web design trends are sure to play major roles as 2019 marches on. How does your website fare overall? Are you interested in making changes to follow any of these trends? You still have time to adapt — but remember that progress won’t wait for you.