I never get to talk about trends – in fact, it’s weird, but nobody asks me about this part of my job. I find web design trends almost as exciting as fashion trends (keyword: *almost*).
But seriously, it’s a great question because not all TRENDS are created equal. Some trends work really GREAT, while others work OKAY, and some are prettier than they are useful.
By WORK, I mean convert or add functional depth to your website.
Without further ado, WEB DESIGN TRENDS! Which ones are you using now? Which ones excite you?? LMK your thoughts!!
TREND #1 – The Carousel 🎪
(aka – slider, slideshow)
Carousels are totally gorgeous and a really popular way to introduce users to your brand on the homepage. What’s funny is that, believe it or not, they’re really just there to be pretty and otherwise have no functional purpose. 🤦♀️ (My exception to this might be if you sold clothes, were a boutique, or if you were a photographer showcasing your work.) No one clicks on them or engages with them, and if you don’t believe me, go here >> http://shouldiuseacarousel.com/
Pros: Pretty. Pretty again? Okay, just pretty.
Cons: Useless and can slow down your site.
TREND #2 – The Instagram Feed 📸
(typically located in the sidebar or footer of a website)
If you use Instagram to market your business, you might be noticing that Instagram Feeds on websites are HOTTTT. I actually love this trend, but only because I love Instagram. The feeds are usually gorgeous (if you take good photos on IG) and allow people to have a more behind-the-scenes, unPhotoshopped look at your brand.
Pros: Pretty + personal way for people to engage with you.
Cons: Drives traffic away from your site because each photo is an outbound link to your Instagram.
TREND #3 – The Hero Opt-in 👩🎤
(A hero is a banner image that’s not a carousel and is the focal point of a page. A good example of a hero opt-in is actually here >> debtfreeguys.com)
If email list building strikes your fancy, the best way to convert users into leads is to have a hero opt-in designed at the top of your website. These convert the best of all other optin-placements and they introduce your brand really well. They do double duty which is why they’re my favorite trend here.
Pros: Gorgeous, highly-converting
Cons: Requires (typically) hiring a designer / developer to create something like this for your website – usually not available out of the box in pre-canned themes.
TREND #4 – PARALLAX WEBSITES 💻
(It’s very hard to write a description of a parallax website, but you can see one here >> http://www.firewatchgame.com)
Scrolling websites are also sometimes called long-tail sites. This trend was revived with the takeoff of mobile browsing because it’s actually become more natural for us to scroll now. Parallax websites are a type of scrolling website – and the optical illusion that the “parallax” effect creates is by having a fixed background image with visually dynamic top-layers.
Pros: Looks freakin’ cool and creates an immersive experience.
Cons: Load time is a PAIN with these sites due to the many layers and long-tail nature of the page. So although mobile scrolling revived parallax and long-tail websites, parallax sites take a loooooong time to load on mobile phones. #irony Occasionally, too, if the developer doesn’t execute parallax perfectly, it can create UX (user interface) issues – AKA – issues where people can’t easily navigate or engage with page content.
TREND #5 – Three Column Block Layouts ✍️
(usually located below the hero or above the footer)
The three column layout (where you have an image and then learn more text/button below it) has become exceptionally popular. Likely because it’s a really clean way to give people what they’re looking for when they come to your website so they can be off and running. See the bottom of the https://liztheresa.com homepage for an example of this layout in action.
Pros: Clean, improves UX
Cons: I can’t think of any – it’s a good way to go. 🙂
Are you utilizing any of these trends? What do you think of them?
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