Businesses are always looking for ways stand out. And in today’s digital world, one of the most effective places to do that is with an eye-catching website. Unfortunately, keeping your site up to date — let alone functional — while running a business is easier said than done.
As you embark on designing a new site, it can be tempting to follow the herd and create something that looks and interacts like all of the others. Step back and remember that in order for your site to be effective, it needs to be unique. It’s much better to be aware of trends without blindly following them because, in reality, they come and go.
When designing BigWheel’s new site, our design team focused on creating something different and modern — without leaning too heavily on industry trends. However, the team was still inspired by some of the beautiful work taking over the web. Here are four trends worth checking out.
USE OF ILLUSTRATIONS
Harking back to the days when print was the dominant marketing medium designers are using more and more illustrations throughout their work. Simply put, they possess numerous advantages over the traditional website photos and user interface mockups.
Illustrations can add a playful look and feel to a site, while also being versatile in expressing many different emotions. In addition, illustrations can be used to create archetypal people who are hardly defined by race, gender, age, etc. allowing the website to be more inclusive without giving up relatability. Instead of defining the type of person that uses your service or buys your products, illustrations leave it open, available to anyone.
MORE IMMERSIVE LONG-FORM CONTENT
Long-form content may seem like a thing of the past, but in reality, it’s changing shape by becoming more captivating and interactive. Stories are broken into short, digestible paragraphs that require the user to scroll through the page passing through videos, photos, graphs or even maps for a more immersive experience.
News outlets such as the New York Times, CNN and National Geographic have long been taking advantage of the internet’s ability to use multimedia. However, brands may begin to use immersive longform content to keep the reader engaged.
With over one billion websites circulating the internet, using unique designs can help capture viewers attention. Asymmetrical and unconventional layouts have become more popular as a way to stand out from the crowd. It’s a great way to build depth which can create an exciting user experience.
PERVASIVE INTERACTIONS AND ANIMATIONS
As browser technology advances, more websites are moving from static images to animations that tell stories. Animations are taking over home pages, contact us pages and everything in between. Benjamin Moore uses a large animated background featuring close up shots of their paint while Vermont engages viewers with animated illustrations. However, animations are also used as the user makes their way through the site. For example, graphics can animate while the page is loading, or show the user an interesting hover state from a link. They can also be integrated to work with scrolling, navigation, or as the focal point of the entire site. Digital Asset is a great example of how all of these animations can come together for a full user experience.