When it comes to designing for the web some trends are necessary (like responsive design) and some are industry shifts (like the move toward flat design). Ultimately all decisions on the design should be based on the user, the client and their business needs, not ‘what is cool’ or doing something for the sake of doing it. Fads fade and sites that rely on them are quickly outdated.
In 2015 we saw some great trends that have led to websites that are improved functionally and beautifully too. In 2016 we will continue to see development of some of these ideas, some will disappear, and some new ones will emerge.
Let’s take a quick look at some of the popular trends for this year;
Mobile web use is growing fast with many picking it will overtake desktop soon. And smaller screens means scrolling more. A few years ago it was said that scrolling was dead but it has come back stronger than ever as an important interaction tool and designers are creating User Interfaces that are more vertical in nature.
Websites like Pinterest have popularized the ‘card-style’ interface. It is a great way to organize information in a fun and user-friendly way and can be used for everything from apps to websites and even print. A key advantage of this style is that it works almost seamlessly across devices as cards can sit horizontally or stack vertically down the screen.
Higher speed internet and improved plugin integration means it is easier for websites to include immersive videos. Video has only been gaining popularity and looks set to continue, many people prefer to watch a clip as opposed to read the copy so including interesting, informative and entertaining videos is more important than ever.
Good interactions provide value to the user and shape how people use devices. Examining and tailoring your website or application to your user will improve their enjoyment of the experience and determine how loyal they are. User Interface and Experience design is now a crucial part of the design process and will continue to be so in 2016.
As flat design became the standard in 2015 we started to see the emergence of big and bright colors and typography. This will gain momentum this year and while 2015 was more monotone big color designs we should see larger and brighter color palettes in 2016, almost reminiscent of the 80’s.
Other trends we expect in 2016 include the continuation of flat design, we should also see less stock elements and more iconography as design strives for beauty and function on the web. Good trends stick but above all, user and client needs must always have the most influence on the design.