Here at Exact Abacus, we’ve had a great 2014 and we hope you have too. I thought I’d round up this year with a few predictions on web design trends for the year 2015. Some of these will be new, some you may already have heard of, but either way they don’t look to be going anywhere soon!
A cursory glance around the web will reveal a number of sources now claiming that tablet and mobile devices have surpassed 50% visitor levels on most websites. This means that it’s more important than ever to ensure your website is tablet/phone friendly.
Truly responsive websites will alter depending on the size of your browser window, just like the Exact Abacus site! Try reducing the size of your browser window if you’re on a desktop machine, and watch the magic as this very page redefines its layout to suit.
Is this the end for clicking? More and more websites are introducing an infinite scroll feature rather than having multiple pages of products or posts. This is undoubtably an ideal feature for some websites (and on platforms like Tumblr) but it’s only natural that it’s also being used on some sites unnecessarily.
One thing that some developers slip up with is website footers. You can’t really have a site with infinite scrolling and a footer that contains important information, especially if that information doesn’t appear anywhere else on your site. Well, it’s been proven that you can, but it’s not a great idea!
Check out an Infinite Scrolling example: http://www.world-of-swiss.com/en
This is the most polarising feature listed in this article. The rise of HTML5 video has allowed for high quality, fast loading, high definition video. Then some designers got a hold of them and started throwing them in the background of websites. EVERYWHERE.
Clients and website visitors seem to love it, developers and ui experts seem to hate it. What do you think?
Check out an example: http://www.myprovence.fr/snapshots2012/en
Scalable Vector Graphics are already becoming more popular. SVGs are fully scalable, can be placed straight onto pages rather than kept in a separate image file, can be styled with CSS and more.
The rise of icon fonts has also played a big part in SVGs rise in popularity, and I can’t see SVGs going away any time soon!
Find out more about SVGs: http://www.w3schools.com/svg/
Sound spooky? Well, I have no doubt that if you spend a little time on the net every day, you will already have seen these somewhere. Maybe you didn’t know what to call them, but you’ve seen them!
Ghost buttons are becoming very popular since they work well when overlayed onto images, and their neutral scheme allows them to work well with any website pallette.
Check out some examples: http://websiteswithghostbuttons.tumblr.com/
Lots more to come on material design. This phrase has come from Google and has been used to represent their new design ideals moving forward. Material design incorporates bold, flat graphics and motion in order to create a user experience that it not only visually pleasing but easy to pick up, and feels natural.
Find out all about Material Design over at Google: http://www.google.com/design/spec/material-design/introduction.html
Already massive in 2014, it looks like infographics are only going to become more and more popular as time goes on. Bridging the gap between imagery and content, infographics present information in a very friendly and accessible manner. Nowadays infographic elements are even being used more often to solve design problems all around the world, and are often seen in portfolios nowadays!
Gone are the days of a small handful of fonts to choose from on the web. With online services such as Google web fonts, Fontsquirrel, Typekit and Fontastic continually growing in popularity, designers now have the freedom to incorporate any font they desire into their project, or even create their own icon fonts!
This has proven hugely popular with designers and clients alike, and the use of web, custom and icon fonts will only grow over time.
Check out the free font selection over at fontsquirrel: http://www.fontsquirrel.com/
This is going to be a touchy one, but I’m going to mention it because I’m not seeing many other people discussing it yet. With the popularity of HTML5 on the increase we are seeing more HTML5 video players, and I recently saw this tutorial (http://css-tricks.com/examples/SoundOnHover/) which discusses an HTML5 solution for introducing audio user feedback in a UI.
I’ve noticed a definite rise in autoplay videos in the last year or so, but in the last few months I’ve also noticed websites doing something I hate (that I thought went out the window with framesets being dropped) – Autoplaying website music that plays between pages. Sometimes restarting with each page load. Truly awful. I predict that this will become popular for a while, along with overly intrusive UI audio feedback (read: stock clicks and beeps) being introduced on all manner of websites, just like Flash sites back in the day!
That about sums it up for today. What are your predictions for web design trends in 2015?