In 2019, the idea that you need to be online is a given. The majority of consumers want to check a business out online before even considering contacting them through another avenue, meaning that it’s practically impossible for a business to thrive without a website. Most businesses know this, but what many of them don’t realize is that how current their website design matters almost as much.
Today’s consumer will engage with multiple websites on any given day. They’ve seen it all and know what modern web design looks like. If your site isn’t performing up to their expectations or keeping pace with what’s current, they’re going to spot it instantly and form an opinion of your brand based on that alone.
So, even if you have a website, it’s important to pay attention to the trends and update your site to meet the new preferences and demands of your audience. The beginning of a new year represents a fresh start, making it the perfect time to take note of what’s happening in web development and to prepare your website for the year ahead.
Here are the top five website design trends to keep your eye on in 2019.
We know, this one was on last year’s web design trend lists too, but responsive design is going to remain crucially important in 2019. In 2018, Google finally went full steam ahead with their mobile first indexing and issued major algorithm updates that reward factors like loading speed for mobile sites. If you’re still expecting results with a desktop only site, or fumbling through with two separate sites, this is the year you want to make the leap over to responsive web design.
Responsive designs are going to be the website of choice. They have the flexibility that enables your website to look consistent and be easy to use on all devices. It provides the best viewing experience, which is crucial for encouraging visitors to linger on your site. While Google hasn’t made any clear cut statements of what type of websites are best, they have made a point to recommend responsive design as the one that works most effectively for both SEO and meeting consumer expectations.
A lot of what we’re seeing currently in web design centers around capturing the attention of an increasingly distracted audience. Businesses have the challenge of creating a site that is visually stimulating while appearing clean and uncluttered at the same time. It’s a fine line to walk, and hero images are where web designers are finding the solution.
Hero images are large, banner type images the makeup the background of a webpage, or at least a portion of it. You’ll see hero images being used more as large headers and as a dominating element on single page sites. In the past, we’ve seen hero images used on sites such as those for artists, photographers, or graphic designers, but in 2019 they’ll become important for websites in a variety of industries.
Curious about the appeal of hero images, especially when you’ve been told that the cleaner your webpages the better? Humans love imagery and it plays a big part in the emotional connection we form with brands. To get the most out of hero images, you need to remember that quality and originality is key. This isn’t the place for low quality, stock photos that don’t do the job of telling a story for your brand.
Brutalism Vs Flat Design
For years, a massive number of websites have favored flat design – that is minimalistic design with simple features. Flat design can look amazing on mobile devices and it provides a nice relief from the digital visual stimulation that your audience is bombarded with. The only problem with flat design is that so many websites are using it that after a while, they all seem to blend together. It’s also true that in some cases, flat design can feel a little boring – not something you’re looking for when you want to make a lasting impression.
We’re going to continue to see flat design for websites, even though some experts will argue that it’s on the decline. What we’re also going to see more of is something that is in visual contrast of flat design, and that’s brutalism.
Brutalism, in the simplest terms, is web design that doesn’t work too hard to make your feel comfortable. Brutalism is like a younger generation’s response to an older generation that was too quiet and subdued. This style of web design uses elements like bright colors or sharp contrasts, bold typography, and layouts that don’t flow smoothly. They work because they’re different, attention grabbing and appeal to a younger audience.
If there’s one thing that audiences across the board have in common, it’s that their attention spans are short and only growing shorter. This has made it increasingly difficult for websites to capture their attention. Animations are a way of capturing attention and making people stop and take a look, which makes them an excellent element for web design.
While animation is web design is nothing new, expect to see even more of it in 2019 as businesses look to establish the uniqueness of their brand and break free of some of the staunch rules of design that have kept many businesses in cookie cutter websites during the past few years.
An Expert Touch
One thing is certain, web design in 2019 in more complex than it has been at any point in the past. In recent years, do it yourself web building platforms have made it easy for smaller businesses and entrepreneurs to create beautiful sites without the expense of investing in a web developer. The issue is that these sites aren’t always optimized for SEO and often don’t teach the user anything about troubleshooting.
In the future, we expect to see more businesses refusing to take chances with their web presence and decide to work with a professional website design company. Choosing web design agency who is not only capable of designing trending features but can also help you select the features that will be the most valuable to YOUR brand is important. Get in touch with Knowmad to discuss the power of these web design trends and how they can impact your business online.
William McKee is a founding partner of Knowmad. As a Web architect & Internet business consultant, he is passionate about applying business knowledge & technical expertise to deliver solutions that advance business online. With over 15 years of Web experience, his current work involves designing strategies and creating processes to help business attract, engage and convert website visitors into customers.