As a web designer and developer in the year 2019, you’re highly likely a part of the crowd of so many others who hold anxious and burdensome relationships with web development — especially when the new year begins ushering a bunch of new web design trends for UI and UX.
From an artist’s point-of-view, going after the ideals of the rest of the crowd is a very bad idea; and mainly because that’s not how you make a name for yourself in the public eye. So along with the lines of this type of thinking, the only upside to knowing the latest trends in your niche is knowing what you wouldn’t want to do for your own web design efforts.
But from a web developer’s viewpoint, finding new trends and keeping up with them is integral to designing a website that caters to the users’ experience; a website that encourages visitor retention and entices people to explore a brand’s website even deeper. Artistic value is something appreciated, of course, but it’s lesser in priority compared to the need for attracting customers and inspiring conversions.
Knowing Your Web Design Trends for UI and UX
So what really matters here?
In an industry like digital marketing, your target market is the group that takes the center stage.
The main point of this is to understand how and why these trends have emerged. How will you go about adapting to each and every one of them?
And the bottom line of it all is to find and implement the trend that makes the most impact on the behavior of your target audiences.
#1 3D Illustrations
We’ve seen 3D illustration take center stage for more than just the past year. For instance, big brands like Stripe or Pitch are leaning more of their branding weight into a three-dimensional design. Simply, the future is something bigger.
The primary reason for this sudden movement is to cultivate realism and add depth to graphic designing. The goal is to make the line between the physical and digital world invisible. It serves to make the contrast between human beings and digital services and products even more vivid. Looking at it metaphorically, you’ll find that it draws the two closer over spaces that are imaginary.
It doesn’t hurt that those 3D visuals are also very appealing to the majority of people nowadays. And we’re talking about in more than just web development. There are 3D visuals when you go to the movies, and the appeal of augmented and virtual reality isn’t lost on us either.
#2 From playful to serious fonts
Going last 2018, we have seen brands like Mailchimp, Marketo, and Uber go through some logo changes. From pretty fonts to ones like good old Sans Serif — in other words, more formal and plain ones. One writer on web design, namely, John Moore Williams, has this to say about the trend surrounding fonts in web design.
#3 Outlined Fonts
You’re a designer and a developer. Highly likely, you’ve got a good eye for exquisite typography.
Outlined types in letterforms are in right now. The appeal of outlined letterforms lies in that somewhat elusive barely-there text. It’s like reading a bold headline that’s half-gone. And while we can’t pin down and describe the ‘why’ behind it all, you have to admit that it’s charming.
This trend, however, is useful if you’re going in the direction of standing out yet appearing comfortable and familiar to the rest of your target market. And in hindsight, this is a good goal to have.
#4 Palettes that Come in Vibrant Colors
Have you noticed the great number of vibrant colors everywhere? Yes, it’s true. Bright colors are all around us, and even more so in web design and development. The colored background choices all range from bright overlays on images to gradients, and even up to working with animations that showcase moving colors. It’s growing in popularity.
The fixation on bright and dynamic color patterns are derived from other web design trends. The vibrant colors slowly gained traction from the flat designs, and they eventually gave birth to using these dynamic colors in tandem with the design of the material. And recently, these bright hues began to gradually take on neon shades.
One amazingly great advantage about this is that colo is an easy one to implement (especially when you and your team have decided on a specific palette). There is no need for scrapping an entire site’s visual composition and rebuilding it from scratch.
#5 Emotional Designing
Ask people or users what’s the most important element they value these days. Most users want to prioritize the experience. And when we say experience, it can easily translate to putting emotions above the list.
Human beings are driven by emotions. So, you need to connect with your customers or users and this is emotional design.
It’s become even more important in the year 2019. Because as we’ve said, emotions create connections. So, it’s safe to say that any app or website that fails to bring an emotional response out of its visitors (blatantly or subtly) will fall behind. And it’s not as complicated as some would like to make it seem either.
There are basic elements to portraying human emotions in any kind of work. There are sadness, joy, anger, trust, disgust, and anticipation and surprise.
So, if you haven’t already, take a moment to think about the content that fits into these categories. Afterward, weave in your site’s use of imagery, colors, and overall IU in building stronger emotional connections with users.
#6 Purpose-driven Animation
Take a moment to think about industries that would most likely implement the use of animations in their websites. While you probably won’t nail your assumptions a hundred percent, you’ll find a good chunk of websites using animations in their website.
The purpose? It’s about driving interest. Perhaps it’s for the purpose of good old storytelling. And when you make use of animation in your web design projects, you can provide a greater user understanding on who connect with design.
#7 Abstract Design
It’s really crazy and complex in this world. So why not reflect that even in web design?
Nowadays, are working projects that deal with abstract elements or a surreal one. It’s expected to grow and develop as more and a lot of users have surreal experiences. They want something of a paradox. Something that’s real, and not quite, at the same time.
So, how does it tie into some of the trends we’ve mentioned so far?
Abstract design, and cultivating surreal experiences work well and splendidly because they tie in with emotional connections. Basically, it’s users relating to abstract and surreal web design (since abstract is obviously up for the viewer’s interpretation and doesn’t have to express any sort of blatant interpretation.
Abstract and surreally designed sites are exemplified by particular site elements. They are characterized by minor to major animations. Plus, they picture things or people and appear cartoonish in nature and generally give the feel of being playful. And the end goal will be maintaining generally fresh design (in terms of perspective) that will keep users engaged.
#8 Single Page Applications are Returning
The appeal in a single page application lies in the continuity it provides. In most cases, there isn’t a need to click away into another page and start anew with the reading.
Plus, more and more designers are finding ways to make single page applications even more engaging than the usual dynamic site. They’re often coupled with various animations and unique scrolling methods for a better experience.
As single page applications ever so slowly take over the scene once again, more and more single page designers will create sites that ingrain immersive storytelling and some very interesting scrolling features (parallax scrolling, for instance).
And on this note, it’s good to point out that single-page application designs work significantly better on smaller devices, like your smartphone or your tablet. This way, your users can easily access everything. It eliminates the need for a menu that needs to navigate across different internal pages.
#9 Designing for Voice-search
It’s not just content that should be optimized for voice-search; web design should be too. Voice revolution has officially risen, and in 2019, you need to interlock web interfaces and conversation together — voice search optimization.
Smart devices found in people’s homes aren’t something that’s uncommon. For lot of web developers, this means you need to think of how your designs can interact with these types of devices. You need to cultivate an enriching user experience that would fit your target audience’s preferences in the websites that they visit.
Perhaps one of your big challenges as designers involves understanding how your target consumers would respond to voice commands. Afterward, prototype the voice interface with related actions and researched keywords.
All this talk about voice-search makes content on your website even more important since the key to a voice interface is solidified in “reading” site content — whether reading is done by your users, or the voice AI.
#10 More and More Gradients
You’ve seen these color trends in not just websites. They’re actually very prominent in a lot of things. Gradients are multipurpose and they work for various types of design that you can possibly conceive. Its popularity is obvious in the number of website projects out today that use gradients.
But what’s with all the hype about gradients? They contribute to the vibrant color trend, and they work well with almost any kind of design pattern. They are an exciting trend in breaking some textual elements in the website or highlighting the specific points that the marketer would want the target customer to focus on. For a fact, they’re actually a bit more prominent in projects that might appear plain or too formal even for the target market.
#11 Vintage Typography and Serifs
Round slabs, vintage fonts that give a more familiar and traditional feel, and serif typefaces are taking center stage in 2019. It’s actually a very refreshing concept. These types of designs on font types are thicker, bolder, and some make use of the popular thin fault of Sans Serifs in the past years.
The biggest perk to vintage typography and serifs are is awesome screen resolutions that they produce when they display on your handheld devices.
#12 Brutalism is the New Normal
Minimalism has famously taken over various web interfaces. And in a similar manner, brutalism is also becoming more and more mainstream. It’s the perfect and appealing opposite of the vibrant color trend that’s present in most websites.
Perhaps only a handful of people would consider this design classy and think of it along the lines of ‘pretty.’ But while that may be the thinking for some, we certainly think it adds a bit of charm to the site — depending on the content that’s being featured, of course. Because, again, it depends on your audience.
#13 Emphasis on Visualizing Data
Just taking a look at most websites would clue you in on people’s fascination for visual content — visual data, that is. You see, we live in a world governed and dominated largely by visuals. And it’s human nature that we are attracted to things that are visible to us.
When you visualize data for your users, it makes it more understandable and a lot more interesting than just plain old charts and bar graphs. It’s a great way to show complex information without demanding too much analysis from the reader or the viewer in question.
Plus, data visualization also works really good in lots of ways. It can be featured on scrolling panels, images coupled with animations, or even an interactive and immersive in-site mini-game.
Want to nail it right on the head?
Build a story around your data. Because if there’s anything that people respond better to than visual content, it’s storytelling and the emotions that it evokes. Make the beginning, the middle, and the end absolutely clear, so your site visitors and your users can jump on and join in the journey.
The entire thing will hopefully culminate in your site visitors spending longer times in your sites, and eventually become your returning customers while generating conversions for your business.
#14 Split Screen
The evident trend: design websites for your mobile users. This is also the main reason why split screens are rising in frequency.
Split screens are approachable methods of placing content so that it works across multiple devices, and as a result, also provide a seamless user experience. Also, many of them initially featured the common aesthetic, but recently, we see more creative variations of in the form of asymmetrical splitting.
Split screen aesthetics are great for making distinctions and hierarchy clear in designs with desktop users.
#15 Animation Specifically for Mobile
There’s animation in general, and there’s specific animation intended for mobile. Yes, it’s clear that some have ignored the prospect of including mobile animation because of its tendency to cause slower loading speeds, but this new movement revolving around it says otherwise.
Over the course of this year, you can expect in seeing more active scrolling animations, and enhance micro-interactions that appear pronounced and subtle at the same time — especially on mobile. This is largely attributed to most developers’ mindsets set to prioritizing mobile.
There are a couple of issues to work out, of course. But if you truly consider the fact that mobile devices are the solid priority, then any developer shouldn’t pass up the chance to design sites and apps that caters to users’ needs, first and foremost.
#16 The Attention on UX Writing
Every noteworthy design has a good degree of messaging in embedded into it via text. Your target audiences demand real web experiences — ones that blur the line between digital and reality. This is part of the reason why people have shifted their focus to writing for the sake of better user experience.
Your site’s copy must be specifically geared towards better engagement and stronger emotional connections between the user and the product or service being offered. In the end, it comes down to the fact that UX writing is courteous and useful for the user. It shows that you value their needs and you care about how they’re interacting with your site. It shows that you see them as more than a walking wallet full of cash.
And in UX writing, don’t forget to take into account that your space for writing is limited — and so are the words you use to tell a story. So make each word count. Treat every word as bait, as you string together coherent sentences that will serve as the hook that will draw your customers in, and show them that you have what they need.
On the Note
There are lots of things that you need to consider when it comes to UI and UX design. But the main important thing to consider is that you truly have the knowledge about your customers. After all, your site is dedicated for them.
You need to consider how UI and UX optimization can help in improving the value and meeting your online goals.