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Trends Web Design

My Take on Web Trends

The beginning of every year prognosticators in the tech world try to predict the upcoming trends…

That’s usually a good time to start, but, I don’t dabble in witchcraft or the occult, so I prefer to aim for the middle of the year. I get a better grasp of what is actually trending and developing.

Responsive web design

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Of course this is number one. It’s the biggest buzz word in web design by far. By simply googling the name the results are amazing.

So what is it?

It’s not a surprise, technology has made us a mobile society. Constantly on the go, users of all mobile devices want ability to have access to their favorite websites anytime and anywhere. There was a short time when mobile sites or desktop versions of websites were acceptable.  Not anymore.

Todays websites need to adapt and be flexible. Have the content of the full website with the versatility of a mobile site. With responsive web design, one site for every screen and device is the solution. Whether the device is an iPhone, iPad, Android or desktop, the website works. No more pinching to zoom or being redirected to another page. With responsive, it just works.

Infographics

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What is the best way to share an idea, data or knowledge? The answer is through infographics.

An infographic is a visual tool used to display information by means of pictures and words. What is great about infographics are how easily they can be spread throughout the web and how clearly information can be read. With the use of colors, graphics, icons, statistics and facts anything can be made into one.

Infographics can be done about anything. News, sports, food and even infographics on infographics (yes, they’re out there). The possibilities are limitless. Providing easily accessible knowledge at a glance is perfect for us, the I need it now consumer.

Infinite Scrolling

The name easily explains the use. Scrolling to the bottom of the pages are non existent. When approaching the bottom of a website more content will continually load forever, or until you get bored or your head starts to hurt from the information overload.

Social media loves the infinite scroll. Twitter, Facebook, PInterest, Behance, YouTube and even Tumblr, all use infinite scrolling. For content rich sites like these, it makes perfect sense. This isn’t always the best choice for consumer or service based websites. But it’s certainly getting used by some big names.

While a few advantages of infinite scrolling exist, never having to click next page, faster browsing and greater exposure to content, it is not the best choice for some website design.

Parallax Scrolling

Even though parallax scrolling has been around since the early 1980’s, with the popularity of videos games, for website design it has taken a few years for the public to accept. The rise in popularity has lead to some very unique designs and some that fail to reach the mark.

The how is quite intriguing. The paralax effect is created by a the background and foreground images moving at different speeds; creating an illusion of depth.

I love the look of parallax scrolling. The added dimension brings an unique feature to the typical scrolling web page. Allowing for added elements which enhance a website, I look forward to seeing what some creative minds can improve upon it or design with it.

Social Integration

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This is not much of trend as it is more of a requirement. How many websites can you name that don’t have social badges? Every business wants to have the social presence and marketing capability which these bring.

Social integration has many perks; free marketing, controlled content, easy interaction with customers and many more. Even though there are many positive aspects with social media integration, there are some drawbacks. No guaranteed revenue and constant updating can be a hassle and hard to see return on effort.

With popularity not slowing down, this part of website building is inevitable on any website. If privacy is reintroduced into society or something comes along to bring all into one, I will look forward to this trend taking a backseat, until then it will be everywhere.

 Honorable mentions

Some others worth mentioning, fixed headers, single page design and content first, are trending as well. While being used quite frequently, I am holding off labeling them trends. The more I see on CSS awards or Awwwards, I’ll give in and consider them full fledge trends.

Lastly, I did not include a trend, simple or clean design, for one reason. Unlike like all the others, this should be a requirement for all websites. A proper website design should not be cluttered or look like the site was thrown together in 15 minutes from a teenager in a basement somewhere. This is just my opinion, I could be wrong.

© 2013 Hub & Spoke – Web Design & Marketing Insights.