Rapidly advancing technology is having a great impact on web design. A cutting-edge web design can help your brand to stand out from the competition. A top priority when it comes to web design is to create intuitive interfaces that are user-friendly. An outdated appearance and clumsy design will drive visitors away. Certain elements of web design such as data security, user-friendly navigation, and quick loading times will always be important. Here are some other trends you are likely to see in 2023.
The use of interactivity has been prevalent in website design for a while. Interactive elements will be more popular than ever in 2023. Drag interaction, hover effects, and parallax scrolling are just some ways to enhance user experience. From a Mail app on Mac to messaging or surfing the internet to watching videos, everything needs interactive elements. Users need it to be engaging and experience it to the fullest.
- Drag interaction: Drag interaction mimics actual physical actions. For example, it allows users to pick up and move objects on the screen. They can answer questions by dragging and dropping objects into designated areas. This gives users more of a sense of control over their experience. They have the benefit of exploratory touch which blends the edges between the physical and the virtual. Ecommerce sites and portfolio sites are making good use of drag interaction.
- Hoverable iconography: Some icons, especially the ones in headers, are so common that users can easily figure out their use. But there are also icons that users may not know and need help to interpret. Using hover-triggered helper text can serve the purpose without causing any clutter on the website. It allows users to confidently interact with what a site has to offer.
- Parallax scrolling: This is when the background content moves at a different speed than the foreground content while users are scrolling. It helps to create an illusion of depth. Users experience a 3D effect as they scroll.
Expect to see more custom cursors. Ways to customize cursors include changing their shape or causing them to trigger animations. This creates a more interactive experience for website visitors. Custom cursors were part of the Y2K aesthetic but in the past, you had to install a cursor pack and this could fill your computer with malware.
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Thumb-friendly mobile navigation
The way we use our phones is likely to affect how we navigate websites. When navigating on our mobile phones, our thumbs do most of the work. Having the navigation bar, menu, and contact buttons in a space the thumb can reach will make websites more comfortable to use and improve user experience.
Motion is the name of the game
Continuous loop high-quality videos or GIFs are popular as they can add movement and visual interest to static pages. Full-screen loops were popular in the past but this year smaller animations will be seen throughout layouts.
- Micro-interactions: These are small animations that offer subtle feedback to users. A common one is seeing a link change color when a mouse hovers over it.
- Kinetic typography: Kinetic typography is basically moving text. You can use this animation technique to grab the attention of visitors when they land on a home page. It can highlight important sections and guide visitors as they scroll. More information will slowly be revealed.
- Animated illustrations: Illustrations may be animated to add interactivity and convey complex ideas. They can do this in a way that lifestyle photos may not be able to fully capture. They also add personality to a website.
There’s a growing need for web designers to factor in the needs of people with disabilities. There are features that can offer more accessibility. These include:
- Creating strong color contrasts between backgrounds and text. People with limited vision cannot read the text if there is not enough contrast between the text and the background
- Adding focus indicators like rectangular outlines that show up around links.
- Using functional alt tags for images. People who are blind won’t understand the content and purpose of images when no text alternative is provided.
- Providing captions and transcripts for audio and video content so people with hearing disabilities can understand them.
- Making online forms accessible with clear instructions, error indicators, and labels that screen readers can convey to users.
Geometric shapes have been popular for a number of years but in 2023 organic shapes will also be popular. Asymmetrical shapes are common in nature, such as winding trails and the edges of a river. Fluid shapes will introduce different sections of a website without introducing any harsh angles or lines. They are also great to use in backgrounds, such as using circles behind products. Organic shapes can add personality without taking away from the content.
Minimalist design is still popular. Some web designers are cutting out prominent navigation sections. They rely on straightforward text to inform website visitors about a company. They may use the hero section of the home page to give a simple description of the company’s mission. A bold, unique font instead of a typical background image can make visitors take notice.
Minimalism can result in fast load times and a better user experience. There are some website designs that focus on a few choice links to a person’s social profiles and information.
Playing with text and images
Web designers are finding unconventional ways of using text and images that help to draw attention.
Mixing horizontal and vertical text: Websites that mix horizontal and vertical text add interest and dimension to a website page.
Overlapping text and images: On blogs and portfolios, text that overlaps with images is seen more frequently.
Using full page headers: Full page headers are popular in 2023. This may include placing call-to-action buttons or important text on the left of the header and an enticing graphic to the right. Website visitors usually focus first on the top left of the page.
Custom illustrations: Website designers are moving away from using stock images and custom illustrations are taking the lead.
Gamified design is appearing everywhere in 2023. It adds the element of human emotion for website visitors. They have the opportunity to interact with website content in a way they are familiar with from playing games. This trend is more than just fun as it provides a highly engaging experience for users. Loyalty programs and user feedback scores are some examples of website gamification.
Chatbots are found on many websites today. As artificial intelligence and machine learning get more sophisticated, the abilities of chatbots will improve. They will become the norm for simple customer service requests. They will also help to inform customers about product updates and more.
When thinking about web design trends for 2023, think about micro-animations like animated cursors. Custom illustrations and blending photos with text will be common. Embracing some of these trends can help to keep your website looking fresh. Updating your website design can have a positive impact on your brand and your revenue.