As we reflect on our predictions from last year when we originally wrote this article, we can see we were very much spot on. The predictions we called out came about for us across a number of website builds and working with clients to build the design they wanted and the feel they needed. We have an updated 2020 digital marketing trends predictions article on the button below. This article here is our predictions for web trends in 2019, it was originally written in December 2018.

Read the 2020 Predictions Here

We love this time of year. Taking a moment and putting what we have seen work and what we believe is coming in the future into a short easy to digest 2020 predictions guide.

When is the last time you updated your website? Has it been over a year? Web designs and trends change frequently. Can you imagine your clients going to a website that hadn’t changed since the Internet came to fruition?

Remember, your website promotes you 24/7, thus staying current and creative leads to conversions. Web design with creativity elements can make a large difference.

Web design trends fall and rise as a reaction to the technological and cultural changes. We know that the year has been a remarkable journey for web design trends. We saw years of design evolution finally come to realization in trends like Tactile Designs and Design System. But is this trend going to disappear in the next year? Or will it continue to grow in 2019? While we can only prepare assumptions, it is important to plan out the best web design trends for the future year so you can make the necessary adjustments and see the biggest impacts.

Inside this informative post, we will dive deep and explore the most popular web design trends of 2019. So, grab your favorite drink and get ready for a creative journey that will take you on a trendy rollercoaster ride.

1. Illustrations and More Illustrations

When you prepare for marketing your channel, image selection of the product remains the most interesting challenge in the competitive arena. For this, there are two types of categories design teams normally concentrate on. First one is the product UI shorts and GIFs and the second one remains editorial or lifestyle photography.

While UI shorts emphasize the in-product experience, the lifestyle photography focuses on a human dimension of the product. When we take a close look at it, the former encompasses produce features and functionality while the latter shows the effect product has on people’s lives.

This image setting will take a new turn in the next year. As assumed, the illustrators will come into the game with an akin marketing and product design. The reason remains the repetitive cycle of the world of fashion. We know that illustrations dominated the advertising till the late 60s and history is bound to repeat itself.

The illustrations will use rough sketches with graphite, along with colorful and abstract shapes to bring innovation to life. The styles will be inspired by real people portraits and the moments of having the first idea. Illustrations will portray the designers’ ability to stay true to the notion that canvas is blank until you make the first mark. Illustrations will powerfully bring vivid life concepts and with single drawings, will act as a guiding light or a north star for the entire designing team.

2. Speed and Accuracy

Do you think that 10 seconds is enough to make an impression on the first viewer of your website? Think again! You have only 3 seconds to attract a users’ attention. Needless to say, the interest of a human depends on the speed and accuracy of your website. According to a study, 50% of users expect that a website should load in two seconds as soon as you click it. If not, the users normally turn to better options.

A beautiful site is attractive, but it doesn’t appeal if it is too heavy and experiencing gimmicks or lags. Your website needs to be faster in the coming year. The web design should prioritize page load speed during the design process. As a web designer, you can’t simply rely on the developer to create something that looks good and ranks well; you need to be a part of the process where speed remains the most important designing parameter. A good looking website will never be seen if it takes 5 seconds to load, as your user will click away before they see that beautiful aesthetic design.

The web speed trend also indicated that there will no more use of large sizes images, uncompressed videos and bloated JavaScript. In 2019, they will be incorporated in a way that doesn’t slow down the overall website and looks good at the same time.

If you aren’t sure of your website speed, Google Page Speed Insights is a good starting point. Find out how long your site takes to load, in addition to suggestions on things you can do to improve it. If you have a low performing score, you’ll need to rethink the size of images, evaluate your server response time, review your current website host capabilities and reduce plug-ins. Changing 1 or many of these items can make a tremendous difference. Remember, a 1 second delay could result in tends of thousands in lost sales for your company.

3. Mobile FIRST

It was back in 2015 when mobile searches ranked highest in the world, overtaking even desktop searches (source). Undoubtedly, the mobile first design is going to be an absolute given in the coming year. This type of design will change the way websites are designed from their fundamental core. The mobile design will include designing the site for the small screen first before even creating a vision for the desktop user. Ignoring the mobile market is risky business; adults spend over 3 hours per day on mobile. If your website isn’t mobile ready you’re actually behind the times. Speed is no longer the only factor Google uses to rank websites; being mobile friendly is an element as well.

Mobile optimization includes ensuring phone numbers can trigger a call, slideshows and images function without Flash, reduced graphics and simplified navigation. Another important point to note here is that mobile first design will not just be based on ranking factors. The visual appearance will be taken as a priority to enhance user’s experience with the website on the device most likely to be used for searching. The design trend is especially gaining popularity to meet the demand that mobile users are requiring. The trend is likely to stay for a long time to come until we come across something more portable than mobiles.  Consumers have a need for instant gratification and you need to effectively deliver your product. Dive into Google Analytics to find out how many of your users are on mobile vs desktop.

Top Tools to test your Mobile Site:

Chrome Dev Tools 

This is a tool that is built into your Chrome brower and is easy to test and debug any pages you come across. This nifty tool will allow you to test the speed of any page, view elements and for those technically minded tweak Cascading Stylesheets (CSS).

Cross Browser Testing  

It’s critical you are easily able to test your site across multiple browers in a seamless way. Cross Browser Testing takes the efficiency to the next level, allowing you to test your site across over a thousand combinations of mobiles and browsers at the same time. This tool also allows you to have side by side comparisons of your site across different browsers.

Browser Stack

This tool is very similar to Cross Browser Testing but uses official Android and iOS emulators, and allows you to gain remote access to these devices to view.

4. Interactions and Animations

The websites will no more remain a static page displaying what it has on a single platform. The websites with enduring beauty and pieces of animations and interactions will be in trend leaving behind the norms of printed words. With animations, the message of the business and its meaning will be portrayed through motion and interactivity. Background videos, galleries, slideshows, motion graphics, scrolling effects and micro-animations are all features to pay attention to. Designers will also incorporate SVG animations due to their quality sustainability and interesting capabilities.

This trend will change how we perceived the website to be only a medium of information. Web Designers will make that design move and allow us to interact with and impact that given information. Tools like conversion rate optimization will also come into play which will customize the content with design to drive the required action by the user by using micro-animations. Small animations will allow the browser to have a much more enriched experience thru button colour changes and communication status bars based on their actions.

5. Page Transitions

When the talk is about animations and interactions, one could not simply leave out the importance of accurate page transitions.  Usually, moving from one page to another feels odd no matter how beautiful the website is. To counter this, the following year will see a design trend that will change the way you sway your browsing journey from one website to another. Without taking in the discreet page transitions, the new trend will focus more on relativity and helping the user browse on the same page.

We will see more and more platforms apply page transitions not to just make interaction easy, but to also present something beautiful to behold. Artistic page transitions will also keep the experience cohesive. It allows the users to not navigate to a relatively new page but ceasing another view from the library of several fine-looking views. Page transition is a nice layer to polish and complete the presentation of design-centric brands.

Progression animation is a tool that can assist with page transitions which distracts users while a new page loads. Implementing animation, such as a progress or percentage bar will give the illusion that loading time is shorter, while in reality, it’s exactly the same.

6. Shapes and Figures

Adding shapes is a trend that stays as a bridge between minimalism and geometric patterns. If you think the reference here is towards simple geometric shapes like triangles, circles and hexagons, then you have the right idea.

Shapes can be easily integrated into a design and using a simple one with bright colors create interesting edges. The trend is set to rule the forte of web designing in 2019 as it makes the website load time shorter while adding an engaging element to the website. Designers are all set to take the shapes to the next level by integrating photography, patterns, dynamism and picture depth within the design elements.

Blending shapes into your site can actually mold emotions and feelings, much like pictures do. Rectangles represent trust and honesty, circles are harmony and protection, and triangles & rhombuses are strength. They can be used dramatically or sparingly but are a fantastic element to incorporate into your brand aesthetic to create fresh and exciting looks.

7. Video Backgrounds

Think of the instance when you are surfing for the best website design companies (lucky you’re already here..) and come across a fast loading portal that has a technical and visually appealing video as the main page background. Doesn’t that feel soothing to the eyes? Such is the eminence of video backgrounds. But these should be minimalistic, quick-loading and flat. The video backgrounds will be an incredibly popular trend of the next year’s web designing movement.

One might assume that videos might make websites sluggish, but such is not the case, thankfully. The video backgrounds with lighter sizes have been known to increase conversions. When a user reaches your website, he tends to stay there in order to watch the entire video loop play. The attention-getting elements help convert users into regular visitors.

Videos are often preferred over text with users. It can convey your message much faster than paragraphs of text and imprints your website in a users’ mind. We tend to recall a video on a website more accurately than a line on a random page. Video backgrounds also raise your time on site metric. The higher you’re on-site time, the better your SEO will get.

Video backgrounds are gaining traction. Here are a few simple rules to keep in mind:

  1.  Try lighter text with a dark video or darker text with a lighter video.
  2. Limit the background video to a smaller height; it doesn’t necessarily have to be full screen.
  3. Invest in a good plug-in. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel by coding a background from scratch.
  4. Ensure your audio is muted by default. Who wants to hear a loud unrequested noise? I don’t know how many times I’ve closed the browser because of some company’s annoying audio.

Learn more here about getting started with video marketing.

8. Broken Grid Layouts

This trend has already been going strong the last year and we predict it will only become more popular. This style enables your brand to be unique, bold and distinctive. It is also a creative way to be experimental with your image.

Brands that have large amounts of content will be unlikely to move to this broken grid style, however, companies such as designers, architects, retail and the creative spaces will push the envelope with this style even more.

9. Chatbots and Interactivity

In recent years interacting online with chatbots has become more familiar with most users, and no longer something feared or considered creepy.

Now with the advancements in AI and machine learning, chatbots are no longer irritating and clunky. Many of our clients receive a large number of their inquiries from online chat as it is an easy and non-confrontational way to start a discussion.

In addition, it is easier than ever to pre-program auto responses and actually, have a basic conversation with a customer via a chatbot service. Check out our Live Chat best practices here for a detailed guide.

2019 is full of new and reworked website designing trends. On one hand remains the tempting visual delights of animations and video backgrounds, on the other side remains the alluring and minimalistic approach of geometric shapes and single page layouts. This is a fine example of how industry changes as the trends change.

Viewing these web design trends, few things are clear, including how a user acts to speedy websites and how plain designs are more preferred over complicated ones. Whatever your preference, one thing is certain, staying on top of the latest norms in website designing will help you keep your business website active and attractive while keeping your business productive and progressive. Take some time to evaluate these trends as they relate to you and determine what you can achieve based on the knowledge you’ve gained. A lot changes every 12 months; get started now. Check out our web design services or contact our team today for a complimentary website audit.

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