In 2017 we saw a tremendous shift in web design trends. The most prominent to be mentioned is that mobile usage finally overtook desktop browsing. It means that in 2018 mobile functionality and responsive web design will become a critical factor, while desktop experience should continue to evolve to win back its place. Now, let’s discuss the most notable web design trends in 2018.
1. Web Animations
This year, videos and animations are going to crack into the websites, expanding their traditional usage. In addition to traditional explaining ones, different types of experimental videos and animations will arise. Virtual and augmented reality based videos will become more widely used, cinema graphs and animated thumbnail images will gain a momentum.
The senior digital designer of Lightful, Bruno La Versa, says. "Storytelling and personality is something that new and old brands are working on in order to capture users' attention, and animations are starting to play a bigger role in this. Animations have shown and will continue to show the brand's strength in our digital world, giving a strong personality to the brand, making it less static and more dynamic," he says.
2. Custom Videos
A lot of times we feel the need to convey some complex information through our website. In this case a static photo just won’t be able to accomplish the task properly, as complexity tends to unfold over time. Branded video is a very powerful tool to solve this issue. As compared to Youtube and Vimeo embedded videos, custom ones can fit seamlessly into the design. They can preserve high quality even with a lot of colors, gradients and images, which GIFs still struggle to do. Moreover, they can be controlled and repeated by the user based on his personal needs.
3. Vibrant Colors
2018 trends will encourage using vibrant robust colors and designers will experiment with them even further. Double exposure, photo saturation and gradients are coming to replace the traditional “web-safe” colors and patterns. With technological advancements monitors and screens are now able to produce a rich variety of colors, which gives courageous designers a huge space for experimentation. The emerging bright and flashing colors and shades will make it easier for brands to draw attention and trigger the interest of consumers.
4. Asymmetric Layouts
It seems like in the year of 2018, web designers started implementing “Think out of the box” approach in its direct sense. Now that most of the web users have got a basic understanding of website usage principles, designers are free to experiment with layouts and grids, using unexpected shifts and asymmetric design as a way to surprise users and make their journey through the website more unusual. Thus, the new trend will help brands increase readability, make website more creative and visually appealing, and help focus user attention.
5. Lifestyle photography takes center stage
As it was in 2017, the work of illustrators will continue having a great popularity and importance in website design and marketing. This year, lifestyle illustrations are becoming more and more effective.
They successfully highlight the product’s human dimension thus showing the effect it has on people. Hence, designers create sketches using graphite, and then add some abstract shapes and amazing colors to bring it to life.
6. Natural rounded shapes
Nature abhors a straight line.
For quite a long time, web and mobile design has been almost monopolized by rectangular interfaces. Until recently, most of the design elements were sharp-edged and right-angled. This started to change in 2017, and became a leading web design trend in 2018. Nowadays, almost all the applications and websites, including the most popular ones like Google, Facebook and Twitter, are using almost aggressively rounded corners on their User Interfaces-cards, input boxes, avatars, and so on.
7. Sticky Elements
Sticky hello bars and navigation elements also started to gain popularity in 2017. Web designers saw the benefits of making some elements stick to the sides of a web page to reduce irritation and convey the most important message in a very soft way. Sometimes, the menu of the website is designed to “stick” to make information easier to access and the browsing process more delightful. Today, this trend is widely recognized to be a powerful marketing tool, especially for call-to-action buttons.
8. Mobile Prioritization
As said before first time in the history of Internet, mobile usage overtook desktop browsing. It means that in 2018 mobile-friendly websites and responsive web design will be a necessity, not a luxury.
Google is ready to make mobile a top priority and start using mobile-first indexing, which means that sites will stop being primarily ranked based on the desktop experience data. In the near future, Google will use the mobile version of the website for determining rank. Of course, this shift has had a vast impact on web design, and specialists have already started employing mobile-first initiatives, techniques, and tools.