With the new year upon us, it’s time to talk about the web design trends 2017. As technology is becoming more advanced and a focus in our every day lives, users are demanding more and more from their online experience, making user experience a big focus in 2017.
Users are seeking personal, interactive and relevant experiences on the internet which means web designers now face the challenge of creating and developing websites which understand and respond to user needs and wants.
2017 is all about utilitarianism, with web designers creating websites that focus on the user’s emotions, creating enjoyment, trust, involvement and satisfaction. So lets take a look at the top 10 web design trends 2017.
Last year we saw many websites being redesigned with a reduced number of menu options in the header. A website previously showing 5-7 options are now showing 3-4. Taking Ikea for example who have redesigned their whole header menu with their new ‘products’, ‘rooms’ and ‘ideas’ options.
Allowing users to find products not only through ‘Products’ but also through ‘Rooms’ allows for a more natural categorisation of products. Also, the ‘ideas’ section allows Ikea to bundle together content and suggest related products. The more limited menu choice provides a more simple and easy way to create a better user experience guiding the user to more easily find what they are looking for.
Experts have predicted that another big menu trend for 2017 is to get rid of the hamburger menu option.
Many have said that the hamburger is unrecognisable for users therefore being pointless. However, even though this menu neatly tucks away all your menu gubbins it has been said to disguise the depth and breadth of a website or app. Users are now being left with no orientation; out of sight, out of mind. Spotify have already made this bold move, but who else will be to follow in 2017.
Styles always fall in and out of fashion and then always come back around with a new and fresh twist. This is exactly what happened with duotones after they reappeared in Vogue when Spotify revealed its new identity, using duotone imagery.
Duotones tend to be used to find a balance between a minimalistic and distracting website. This approach works great for hero images allowing them to be included without taking attention away from the key messages and navigation, adding visual interest for the user. You can see an example of this below.
Google has further explored their material design approach influencing many web designers to follow Google’s lead in 2017.
Material Design is a visual language created by Google to develop one system that allows for a unified user experience across all devices, platforms and screen sizes.
It focuses on many traits of a flat design, being bold, graphic and incorporating plenty of colour. However, it also incorporates the ‘material’ concept of material design focusing on surfaces, edges and space. It is all about the user experience and designing with the user in mind.
With our increasingly advanced web technologies it has become possible to create remarkable effects on webpages. One of these effects is parallax scrolling, which allows the background to move at a slower rate to the foreground, creating a 3D effect as you scroll down the page. You can find an example of this here.
Although parallax scrolling can provide a subtle element of depth to a website it can also be overwhelming for the user and result in poor SEO due to the high graphics. This is why experts are predicting we will see many websites wave goodbye to this web design trends 2017.
One principle of material design is ‘motion provides meaning’. The user’s actions are the primary focus as they are the people who are interacting with the design, therefore controlling the experience and it not being the other way round.
It is likely we will see the back of the parallax scrolling however it is thought we will see an improvement of motion in web pages and apps.
Google has said “meaningful and appropriate, serving to focus attention and maintain continuity. Feedback is subtle yet clear. Transitions are efficient yet coherent.”. It is all about design for web that increases the experience for users. You can view this topic in more detail on the Google Design Website.
Over the last few years stock imagery has become an increasingly popular option for websites. It provides an easy and inexpensive way to get decent images for web.
However, as many companies are now going through digital transformation with a user centered approach stock imagery is just not making the cut. For many it is described as being unimaginative and unrepresentative of the core business values and it simply is just not doing the job anymore.
In 2016 we saw a lot of attention around app-inspired web design, however it is predicted that PWAs (progressive web apps) are to take the world by storm in 2017.
Follow this link to better understand why we should all be using PWA’s.
Also, as part of Google’s Material Design they revamped their Google Fonts Service, an open source library of fonts.
You can quickly and easily preview fonts better than ever before. You can view them on a swatch of backgrounds and it has also now become easier to configure fonts.
Google have also developed a font called Noto, which has been designed to bring a cohesive visual language too 800 different languages. This is provide an easy way for continuity to come into play when changing language settings or juxtaposing scripts.
Finally, minimalism. This is to put a big focus on speed performance and having an uncluttered user experience. It is suggested that this trend was started by the move to more responsive websites which are mobile friendly and clear on a mobile screen. They also encourage the user to scroll down the website, meaning that they are not expecting to be overloaded with content.
There is a big focus on typography, contrast and spacing.
So there it is, our suggested web design trends 2017. We hope this guide has helped you and if you are thinking you need to redesign your website to keep up with the ever-changing world check out our web design packages page or feel free to contact us for a free consultation.