The following year is going to be super controversial in the sphere of web design. On the one hand, designers will seek simplicity in flat designs and minimalism. On the other hand, video backgrounds, grid layouts, and animation will become more popular.
The logical question is: How do you reach harmony between a tawdry website overloaded with fancy elements and faceless, almost blank pages?
Unfortunately, the one perfect solution doesn’t exist. Experienced marketers say: “Everything is individual. You should try again until you find the decision that is right for you.”
Therefore, it’s important to find the balance between the two trending approaches and focus on the main goal: Improve the user’s experience on your website.
In this article, you will learn more about nine major trends that will contribute to positive UX and determine the direction for web design in 2019.
Nine Pillars of the High-Powered Website in 2019
There was a time when mobile-only websites or Flash videos and animations were super trendy. Still, the user’s behavior is constantly changing, new technologies replace outdated ones, and Google Speed Updates set new rules.
Yes, web design trends alternate each other at a breakneck pace and pursuing them (read: modifying the entire website) is difficult.
Nevertheless, there are some decisive tendencies that are important to follow in order to hold leading positions.
In 2019, nine major web design trends have already been established and are expected to be implemented on many websites to draw traffic and convert visitors into customers. These trends are:
- Speed (surprised? :))
- Flat Design
- Single Page Design
- Broken Grid/Asymmetrical Layouts
- Video Backgrounds
- Chatbots/Machine Learning
- Augmented Reality
Now, let’s take a look at these trending components more deeply.
During the design process, optimizing a website for speed should be a priority. The case studies on this subject reveal the following numbers:
The websites that load faster have a better UX than those with heavy data that need more time to be displayed.
In addition, according to the latest Speed Update, Google now prioritizes ranking for the fastest loading websites. I won’t be surprised when other search engines follow this example.
Besides compressing the large visuals, there are 8 more ways to optimize a website for speed.
As a follow-up to the speed issue, flat design will become extremely trendy in 2019 for two reasons:
- Both desktop and mobile users will experience a faster website load.
- Websites with flat design have a higher SEO value as they carry out the speed requirements.
Creating a flat design doesn’t mean removing all visuals and styling components from the website. It means reducing the number of distracting elements that slow down the site performance and stuffing a website with useful content.
At the very beginning, it’s important to replace the bright and rich color scheme with two or three colors that make a perfect match with each other. Furthermore, you should review banners, sliders, pop-ups, and widgets on your website. Some of them probably don’t carry any value and can be removed. Thus, you will free some space and make the navigation on your site more convenient.
Minimalistic designs aren’t boring. By using contrasting colors, sans-serif fonts, and a couple of simple but engaging visuals you will create an intuitive design and appealing look for your website.
Speaking of fonts, complicated extraordinary sans-serif and OpenType variable decisions will be really trendy in 2019.
Single Page Design
As a result of flat design and minimalism, a pageless design will become the next trend in 2019.
Yes, in terms of SEO optimization, single page designs are not the best idea. Due to the limited space, accomplishing major SEO techniques important for the high ranking is complicated. In addition, it’s harder to stuff the page with keywords that make the site more noticeable to the search engines.
Still, a single page design has substantial advantages that will help establish itself in the leading trends for the following year:
- Search engines love the light and fast websites (speed, speed, speed).
- They tend to be more like mobile-first websites and look good on any device.
- It’s easier to modify and change such sites.
- It’s really easy to navigate through them (leads to better conversions).
The users also love single page designs because they mostly contain relevant information and nothing distracts visitors from their main goal. Remember that the type of site depends a lot on the specifics of your activity. This solution might not suit e-commerce sites, for example.
To sum up, the popularity of pageless designs is short-lived. Still, they will definitely speak a word in 2019.
Multiple studies show that more people surf the internet via their mobiles than from a desktop PC. According to Stone Temple research from 2017:
- The percentage of visitors that use their mobile devices to surf the internet increased from 57% to 63%.
- The time spent on the Internet via mobile devices also increased from 40% to 49%.
In 2019 (as well as in 2018), more people will switch to mobile devices to access the Internet. Therefore, optimizing a website for mobile users is the next goal of all web designers, developers, and other related personalities.
Still, there is a slight difference between mobile-friendly and mobile-first websites.
With mobile-friendly, the technology that was used to create a website for desktops was modified and implemented to the mobile responsive websites. Mobile-first products use an original strategy. In this case, the website is created for the mobile device first and is then adapted to the desktop.
In 2016, Google launched a new mobile-first index. According to it, the search engine started ranking websites based on their mobile version instead of the desktop one. It means that having a mobile website is not enough. Creating and optimizing it toward all standards of the search machines should be a priority. In 2019, with development and improvement of mobile versions, the requirements will only get stricter.
Optimization should be based on the user’s behavior.
For instance, it’s important to test different alternatives to the Hamburger menu. Shopify representatives pointed to a 30% increase in clicks on actual menu items and a 9% increase in clicking at all when they replaced the Hamburger menu with a tab bar. Facebook representatives confirmed the same. In this case, the specific type of the menu didn’t turn out to be as intuitive and convenient for users as was expected.
Furthermore, the grid of the website and the placement of all elements should be done taking into account how most people hold their smartphones. For instance, according to the research, 50% of users hold the device with two hands. Such facts that might seem unimportant on the surface should be taken into consideration when designing your website.
That’s why it’s not enough to make a couple of technical changes to the desktop version and adapt it to mobile devices. Personalized approach matters a lot.
Asymmetrical Layouts and Broken Grid
Web designers will avoid symmetry in 2019. Web-brutalism is going to create hype in the following year.
Asymmetrical layouts can occur in different ways: the headline that is out of place, blocks of unequal sizes, the unusual position of elements on the page, irregular patterns, the mixture of textures, and, of course, broken grids.
Broken grids are the part of the planned asymmetry. Their goal still lies in navigating visitors through the website and drawing their attention to the most important parts. Therefore, it’s crucial to entrust this work to a professional with a delicate sense of beauty. Otherwise, a web designer can turn a website into chaos.
Despite the wish for simplicity and minimalism, videos will become more popular in 2019. Although they tend to weigh more and slow down the performance of the website, they really lead to conversions:
- Videos have an eye-catching effect. Once a person visits a site and sees the video playing, he will definitely stop for a while. Once a visitor is intrigued, you have a chance to promote stronger interest in your company/service/art/activity, etc.
- Videos can convey more information than text. In two minutes, you can say more than you would write in two or three paragraphs.
- The interactive nature of such visuals attracts people. Most of us are tired of boring text (especially long, exhausting, gaudy text).
- Videos save time. The user can turn it on in the background and keep on doing other stuff (read: better UX).
Finally, don’t you find anything modern and stylish in the high-quality video backgrounds?
Micro-animations are a powerful tool that navigates users through the website and contributes to the intuitive nature of the modern design.
They can appear in different forms: the change of certain element’s color, the change of element when mousing over it, etc. Such tricks show a person that he is going in the right direction. One of the most popular forms of micro-animation is used for web forms.
Plus, micro-animations can reward a person for doing certain actions on the website (completed registration, booking a hotel room, making a purchase, etc.).
Do you remember those bots that pronounced your commands loudly with a strange voice? Thank God, those times are over. Today’s bots don’t cause more problems – they solve the existing ones due to artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning.
That’s why a statistical genius Andrew Pole brought Target to the level where it identified teens’ pregnancy. Machine learning allows analyzing our activity on the internet and creating certain patterns according to which we get personalized offers and ads. That’s why Facebook knows us better than our Granny.
In 2019, the technologies will be improved. The chatbots’ interaction with the websites and the algorithms of gathering and processing information will reach the next level. The quality of the customers support provided by bots will also surprise us in the next year.
Currently, augmented reality is used mostly by a few apps and games. Still, soon it will become the progressive trend.
You can already find AR in some online shops. The interaction via augmented reality has become easier because most devices have cameras. How does it work? As an example, you can use a virtual mirror to try on clothes in the e-commerce store. Interactive 3D menus also represent the AR.
This technology is a mixture of digital content with the real world and its opportunities are almost unlimited. Still, this sphere hasn’t been discovered completely yet. So, you can contribute to its development and make a mark in the web design trends in 2019.
One of the craziest things that seemed to be impossible for our Grannies and Grandpas closes the collection of the web design trends for the following year. Although surprising visitors and interacting with them is important, the key aim should still lie in providing a positive user experience. Intuitive design, convenient navigation, and fast performance should be a priority.
Thank you for reading this article. Keep following us for another bit of secret information 🙂
Jessica spends 12 hours a day on the internet managing security for web assets and loves her macha tea