Design is communication.
As designers, we want to evoke emotion through the way we tell a story and take users on a journey. The fundamentals, such as the user experience (which is the foundation we base our web design on), and the way we style and create the user interface are the backbone of our design interpretation. We are always looking for ways to improve our skills and services. Here are a couple of solid web design trends for HubSpot Websites that will help you get there.
It's been an important medium for a long time, but there has been a greater emphasis on it this year. We know that video backgrounds are engaging, making your website or app experience more dynamic. When executed well, there is a perfect balance of enticing the user by not taking attention away from the messaging, but rather, enhancing the tone and connection around it.
What I'm actually getting to, is the higher demand for educational content. Short, informative, relaxed clips. In this current climate, we have seen a huge increase in remote working and therefore, an increase in the demand for personal, education videos to help connect teams and customers alike. Now I know for a lot of us, it becomes daunting when you don't have the resources. You think that you'll need a studio, expensive lighting equipment and need to become a pro at editing. But it really is a lot more straightforward. I use Vidyard. They are making leaps and bounds in their industry. Free and straightforward to use, the app (and Chrome extension) gives you a step to step guide on how to roll out your educational clips, fast.
Pure, clean, simplicity. To the point shall we say. Large, white, negative spaces create a focal point for your messaging, allowing your imagery to stand out. Minimalism in web design can mean many things — from simple graphic elements and thin colour schemes to a bare minimum of text and website navigation.
This year, minimalist navigation has become a popular trend as it takes away much of the difficulty in usability. The less a user has to think about moving around, the more time they spend immersed in the site.
Big, Bold & Outlined Typography
Two trends that go hand-in-hand. In 2020 larger-than-life typography that can be read from across the room. Apart from being trendy, minimalism erases the unwanted clutter that makes websites look bulky and chaotic. These days, designers take this a step further by using extra-large typography to enhance the visual appeal.
Colour schemes & modes
Luminous colour schemes are big this year. Glowing, neon colours such as blues, purples, and pinks will make your website look modern and futuristic. Coupled with deeper and darker shades, these luminous colours make design elements pop. (Fyi: It also conserves energy on devices such as OLED screens, conserving battery life by reducing the use of light pixels). Which brings me to creating your website theme in Dark mode. Dark mode web designs not only look ultra-modern, but they're easy on the eyes and enhances the accessibility of design elements and navigation. Dark themes improve the visibility of other accent colours like the luminous colour scheme mentioned, for a truly dynamic design. Use this dark mode to improve the visibility of other accent colours like the luminous colour scheme mentioned, for a truly dynamic design.
Hand-drawn elements & artistic illustrations
Perfect imperfections. Hand-drawn design elements bring emotion and humanity to your websites. In 2020, this human-centred approach expresses positivity and soul to your web designs. Visitors find this appealing – a great way by adding a personal touch to showcase your creativity. Pixel-perfect designs are a prerequisite today, but it's the hidden quality of this almost 'rebellious' web design trend that will make your project stand out from the crowd.
Artistic illustrations are another bespoke artform, adding a dose of authenticity to your website. Let's face it, either one of these creative styles will help connect you emotionally with your users, making it more likely they will engage with your brand.
Geometric shapes are simple yet powerful assets that allow designers to create more appealing visual compositions. They are commonly used to create visual dividers between sections. Many product teams are now using geometric shapes to convey a specific feel, eg. soft geometric shapes can help create a futuristic look, and sharp lines and edges can convey a brutalist feel. If you're considering adding geometric shapes in your design and looking for inspiration, you can find perfect shapes in nature. This year sees more innovative use of geometric shapes, including overlapping shapes and soft shadows to give more depth and personality to a design.
Mixing photography with graphics
Using real photography makes web design more attractive and realistic. More importantly, the design speaks louder and conveys a personalized message when you add illustrations and graphics with this medium. When you merge photography with graphics, it helps stand out with an authentic visual and make's the composition more memorable to the user.
3D interactive animation & elements
There is no denying that 3D visuals always delight people. Interactive 3D design encourages users to stay longer and reduces the bounce rate. Aside from the too expensive virtual reality (VR), hyper-realistic 3D, technology is now available so that you can design in 3D even without the sophisticated equipment. Expect to see more use of 3D technology in graphic design and interaction design. There is no surprise that this medium is still on the top of the list for visuals and UX, creating an immersive, online experience. Here are a couple of sites that I absolutely love – where the graphics and animation are entirely engaging and give a unique visual experience. To experience the effect, click on the images below to visit the websites.
Soft shadows, layers and floating elements - 3D ‘Lite’
Soft shadows and floating elements add interest, depth and give your website a "3D Lite" look. We would all love to create 3D designs (3D interaction is king). Some of us just don't have the resources and time. Next best thing? Think soft shadows and floating elements. Designers can add a more creative interpretation of their 2D layouts with soft drop shadows and layering elements on top of each other for extended depth. These effects give the design a lightweight feel as if the elements are floating over each other.
Smart Use of Micro-interactions
Micro-interactions have a single purpose — to delight the user. These crisp and short, subtle UI animations engage the user with sweet gestures, prompting you to take the next step. They are designed to add a human-like feeling to your website. Other examples could be a hover state of a button, a loading symbol, or scroll-triggered animation as you move down your website. All these micro-interactions or animations encourage the user to engage with your app or website for longer. To experience the effect, click on the images below to visit the websites.
Innovations to keep an eye out for
HubSpot has been ahead of the curve here, but 2020 sees higher demand for more conversational interaction than ever before. Chatbots are on the user's disposal 24/7 to answer the most frequently asked questions and guide users through the site. Moreover, advanced AI technology will keep making chatbots more adequate than ever.
Voice User Interface & Automated Assistants
Or, in other words, the ability to lead an actual spoken conversation with devices. It is now possible thanks to AI and voice user interface technology. Watch this space for a rise in the use of automated assistants in websites that use voice user interface technology. Think Alexa for Amazon and Suri for Apple.