At every year end, experts across all industries share their views on the new trends and developments which will rule over those industries in the coming year. It has become a tradition, and both professionals and interested stakeholders keep their attention riveted on such announcements.
In truth, when an industry leader is sharing their views on upcoming trends, this is the only validation those trends need. Companies and individuals will eagerly adopt them, because they are confident that this is the right thing to do. It is very rare that a top expert would risk their reputation on an off-mark recommendation.
In web design there are many, many voices, schools of thought and opinions, but there are a few moments when everyone agrees. One such moment is when Pantone shares the colour of the coming year (by the way, for 2017 it is “greenery”) and another is when the upcoming design trends are shared and discussed on specialised blogs and the social media.
After carefully perusing various knowledgeable sources, we are now confident enough to share the top web design trends that will define the year 2017:
- Minimalist Card Design
The entire concept of the web page shall be reinvented in the coming year. The mobile internet revolution has already reshaped browsing habits and the core web design principles, and these changes continue to change the way websites are built and used. Minimalist, card-style design replaces large and cumbersome web pages which require lots of scrolling.
The new concept is more personal, easier to browse on mobile devices, and helps website visitors relate to the content and understand its meaning easier. White space and generous breaks between paragraphs will continue to be the basic rules of effective web design but will be paired with carefully placed graphic elements which complement, rather than dominate, the content of the website.
- Typography Shall Be More Important Than Ever
Selecting the right font for a website will be more important than ever. A font with great personality, which can be identified with a specific brand and looks great on various screens of different sizes, will be a key player in the success of any website.
Custom-made fonts are also on the rise, but in 2017 we expect to see a standardisation in terms of file formats and typeface in order to ensure optimal displaying on all browsers and platforms.
- Smarter Use of Parallax
Parallax has been around for a while, but it was not put to the best use, at least according to web design specialists. Instead of being a functional, organic part of a website, it was applied more like a gimmick to wow people. Now, the simple effect of the scrolling of a website’s foreground and background at different speeds no longer wows anyone. And talented web designers will be able to focus on the functional side of this technology, creating better, smoother and more interactive browsing experiences.
Websites have evolved beyond the concept of static repositories of information. Now they are living things in the cyber world which allow users to interact with them, create their own personalised browsing experience and access information at their own pace.
Microinteractions, such as mouse hover or tap animations will be an ever-increasing presence on websites, allowing users to choose between a static or an animated browsing experience. This approach is due to a growing concern for offering an optimal user experience to everyone – including people with low-end smartphones and slower mobile internet connections.
- Overly Simplified Menus
There is a huge difference between browsing a website on a computer equipped with a keyboard and a mouse and a smartphone with a tactile screen. There are physical limitations to navigation through a complex menu, so these complexities have to go away. People need to be able to access any page or section of a website in a tap or two, without making special efforts to hit precisely the small link on the screen taking them to the content they want to read.
The entire concept of website menu and sitemap has started to change, but will continue to suffer radical changes. In 2017 the demand for simple, easy-to-use menus and mobile-optimised navigation structure will reach the highest level, making this design element one of the best practices for great web design.