We've created a list of upcoming web design trends that we think'll be kicking around in 2015. Make sure to let us know on Twitter what your predictions are!
Flat Design - the crux of current web design trends
If you were to compare websites designed now to those created a few years ago you'd notice a huge difference between them. Older websites dominantly relied on bright transitional colours, abstract animations, and all sorts of quirky elements to get people to engage with the content. This type of site was sometimes tough to browse.
In fact, with all the distractions created by the design elements it was a wonder that anyone actually read the content. This just shows how far web design trends have come! Thankfully, a majority of sites and many design disciplines tend to be heading towards the idea of 'flat design'. Flat design is exactly what it says on the tin; the design gets taken back to basics. All the 'quirky' clashing colours and over the top drop shadows are disappearing, to be replaced by simplistic, often tonal 'flat' art. By using flat design in the context of websites we can ensure that the site is as simple as possible, developed in a crisp, two-dimensional design that is easy to browse. This makes it even easier to access the content that matters. This trend has re-appeared over the last year or so, and it seems that the technique is going to continue its rise in 2015. Examples :-
Large imagery is the up and coming web design trend in 2015, mainly used on landing pages and home screens. This style puts emphasis on a large focal point for the best impact. It seems as though more and more sites are opting for large banner images, which (when done correctly) offer a brilliant visual experience right off the bat. This design style seems to be quite popular when used with flat design and large typography (we'll discuss that one in a second). The images help draw attention to the page and use flat design to get to the point. Combined, they help focus a page's intent and more importantly, the visitor's actions. It is not just images, but engaging videos being used, too! Quite often the information in these videos is similar, or sometimes identical as the written content on the rest of the page. However, it provides the reader with a variety of different methods to absorb the content. Choice is good! Obviously large imagery will not work with every site, but if you can build it in during the design process without overindulging then you should. Examples :-
Mobile First Design
If a website was designed during the mobile revolution (which was generally the last eight years or so) and providing the web designer was sensible, he or she should have been designing with the mobile experience in mind (that is after getting it to look fantastic on desktop devices first.) This method of development was fine and all, but it often meant that the mobile site didn't get the same amount of love as the desktop view, and that meant that it could sometimes be slightly difficult to use on mobile. Mobile first design changes this. Website designers have started to realise that the majority of people who land on websites nowadays are arriving there on mobile devices. This means that the keyboard and mouse experience needs to be tailored to fit the tap and swipe experience; call it the best of both worlds. The goal of the designer will be to ensure that those using the mobile website get exactly the same user experience as those using the desktop site. In all, it's about ensuring that the website visitors stick around as long as possible and do not leave from frustration and difficult navigation.
Parallax is a design choice that seems to have been going strong for a while. This web design trend is about adding depth to a page that would otherwise be static utilising several alternating moving layers. Sound confusing? Let’s explain… Think about how the backgrounds moved in old platform style video games -Mario Bros. Streetfighter, Megaman etc (oooh, 90's nostalgia). Well if you can remember how different layers moved at different speeds thus giving us an illusion of depth. If you’re an oldie like me and played these totally awesome video games then you should pretty much have the gist. If not, then head over to our friends' at Firewatch's site and you’ll get the picture. In the past, many sites used parallax design to its extreme, going completely overboard. The whole concept of using parallax design is to draw attention to specific elements on the page, which doesn't work when the entire page is being highlighted. Hence why people are now using it in a more subtle form. Subtle parallax design means adding a touch of interactivity to the site and adding a bit of attention without covering the whole website with it (which never works now!) It works well amongst large static displays where the web designer wants a very specific element to stand out. I recommend you check out the Firewatch site. It's the best use of parallax we've seen that adds loads of character to what otherwise would be a static experience. Example :- ## Emphasis on Large Typography Typography plays a major role in the communication of a website, be it in short one word statements, short sentences or large groups of information. The way that fonts are displayed is so important to the look and feel of a site. One of the biggest errors in web design trends over the past few years is tiny text. It’s baffling. Who decides that small text (especially in large chunks of information) will ever be easy to read? Large typography is all about increasing the impact of the most important information on a page. It may sound obvious, but using a large easy to read font next to a relevant banner image is one of the best ways to make a statement. This web design trend is being adopted into web design from advertising design, where it has been used for decades. In short, it’s a way of giving your user the most amount of information (both in visual and text format) in the shortest period of time. Example :- Here's our two cents on the web design trends expected in 2015 - what are yours and what do you hope to see more than anything?