Now is a great time to reflect on the year that was and look ahead to what web design trends we can expect to see in 2017. During 2016 we’ve been spoilt with loads of amazing web designs and we can’t wait to see what this year has in store for us.
There are a bunch of trends we’ve picked up on that we think will continue to grow and shape new web designs in 2017. Let’s take a look:
1. Mobile First
Mobile friendly & ‘responsive’ design has been a must have for websites over the last few years. With mobile phones having recently surpassed desktop usage for overall internet traffic, web designers are now moving towards designing for mobile sized screens as the first focus rather than as a secondary focus.
2. Video over static images
You only need to check out your social media feed to see that the use of video over static imagery is booming. This also applies to websites. Video is a more powerful and engaging way to grab a users attention and convey more information quicker. Expect to see more video use on websites, especially in the crucial landing areas like the top of the homepage.
3. Less Stock Imagery
Users are getting sick of seeing the same stock images appear across multiple websites and the use of stock images can be considered generic and boring. In the future, we can expect to see websites feature more of their own custom designed images, like dropbox.com below.
4. More Animations/GIFs
For similar reasons to video, animations/GIFs are becoming more popular. An animation can convey a lot more information than a static image, making them useful for story telling or showing a user how to do something. You’ll probably already have noticed animations being used a lot more in your smartphone apps, web apps and websites. We predict their use will continue to grow heavily during 2017.
5. Big Bold Statements
When you land on a website expect to see a few big words taking up a decent chunk of real-estate. If you’re greeted with a plethora of information it can be overwhelming and make you go elsewhere. Keeping it short and sweet with a big bold statement front and centre captures the users attention and entices them to find out more. Sometimes less is more 🙂
6. Vivid Colours
A lot of big brands are moving away from earthy or neutral colours and going for stronger, brighter, richer colours in 2017. Stepping away from ‘safe’ colours can grab the users attention and make your brand stand out from the rest. Monitors produced over the last few years are also a lot better at displaying a wider colour range at better resolutions, which may be another reason brands are embracing brighter colours.
7. Colour Gradients
Gradients are making a comeback! One of the biggest brands to embrace the gradient in 2016 was Instagram with the redesign of their logo.
You’ll see loads of websites using gradients in 2017, often in combination with a vivid colour palette.
8. 360 Degree Cameras & Virtual Reality
360 degree cameras and virtual reality headsets are becoming more common place and will continue to grow rapidly during 2017. As more of this gear is sold, expect to see more content online tailored towards the VR experience. YouTube now has a library full of VR videos. Car makers can now virtually drop potential customers into the drivers seat of their latest model, real estate agents can give a virtual tour of a house on the market to overseas investors. Expect to see more VR ready content built into websites as the web tools become available to support it.
9. Drone Content
As video is becoming more popular to use on websites, creators are looking for new ways to push the boundaries to obtain cool footage. Like VR, drone sales are booming fast with 100’s of models available. One of the primary uses for drones is to capture video footage. Expect to see more of this footage used in videos online. Real estate agents & outdoor leisure providers like wineries, golf courses take note.
10. Different Ways to Use Parallax
Parallax has been around for a while now, with some believing it’s overused and a dying trend. Parallax in web design is when a background image or element moves at a different speed to the foreground when scrolling, creating a perception of depth. We think parallax is here to stay, as web designers look for new ways to utilise it. We’ve seen some pretty cool websites which have multiple parallax elements on the page set at different speeds, which when pulled off right can create a big wow factor.
11. Simpler Navigation
Long multi-level navigation menus are disappearing in favour of simpler navigation. This is partly due to the increased use of mobile, with the limited screen real estate making it even more essential for websites to be easily navigable.
12. Messing with section dividers.
Different sections in websites are often differentiated by a straight horizontal line. More websites are using different shapes, curving the lines, angling the lines or placing elements overlapping the section divider (think Google Material design) to make things more interesting.
These design trends will help shape the websites of 2017. We can’t wait to see more of what this year has in store for us. We’ll definitely be using these trends for ideas and inspiration as we shape some of the websites we develop during 2017.