TOP 10 WEB DESIGN TRENDS FOR 2018
BLVCK DIVMOND’s web design team is obsessed with the latest trends and web technologies. That passion drives our design process and assures the development of high-quality websites that thoughtfully incorporate technologies that make sense for your business. We want our clients to have the latest and greatest when it comes to your website and we are already thinking about next year’s web design and development trends.
2018 will be all about rich experiences. Technologies such as virtual reality, machine learning, and voice user interfaces have been honed and are now mainstream. Expect to see clean, simple designs that make way for these immersive technologies. Read on as we take a deep-dive into what websites will look like in 2018!
In 2017, designers and developers began creating clean and simple websites for better mobile performance. Image-heavy websites are slow to load and frustrate mobile users. The number of mobile searches is going ever-upward, so we can expect this trend to continue, but for an additional reason — new technologies! Websites in 2018 will feature interactive animations, chatbots, augmented reality and more. You simply do not need a website with flashy, distracting graphics when you have fancy new interfaces to engage users.
While website layouts will be clean and simple, you can expect to see web designers unleash their creativity on typography. Websites with text-based designs quickly communicate messages to users and also lend themselves well to mobile. In 2018, expect to see lots of bold headers and the use of text links instead of buttons.
INTERNET OF THINGS
The Internet of Things (IoT) uses technology to connect devices to the internet. Examples of IoT include smart light bulbs, such as the Phillips Hue and apps that help you track down your lost keys (how did they end up in the refrigerator AGAIN?). Websites will most definitely be using IoT technology. In 2018, expect to see IoT interfaces on websites that allow you to interact with smart devices. A smarter website means a more complex backend, but a professional web developer will get you connected and create an interface that’s simple to use.
VIRTUAL REALITY VIDEO
In 2017, we witnessed the rise of video on websites. It seemed like every website has a video intro, so we could see the faces behind the products and services we use every day. We also saw a rise in apps and services that make it easier to create videos. Websites in 2018 will take video to new, immersive places that once seemed like science fiction only a few short years ago. Expect to see websites tricked out with 360 videos, 360 modeling, video mapping, and interactive videos. Though these videos might seem costly and time-intensive, there are actually quite a few apps already available to make creating virtual reality videos more accessible. At BLVCK DIVMOND, we’re ahead of the game.
Technology has advanced and web browsers handle animations much better than they have in the past. Animations used to be flashy and distracting, but 2018 will usher in a new era of subtle, useful animation. Expect to see scroll-triggered animations and animated logos. In this example, the designers created a subtle fade so they could display more content. It’s also a great example of a typography-driven design.
CHATBOTS, AI, AND MACHINE LEARNING
Over the years, we’re increasingly communicating with bots. You probably spoke with one the last time you called your mobile service provider. At first, these bots seemed to make it more difficult to solve problems, but over the years, they’ve gotten smarter thanks to improved artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. This is also why Facebook knows us so well. Facebook has learned what we look like and asks if we want to tag ourselves in a photo. It also uses location data and learned our reading habits so it knows exactly which ads, events, and information to show us in order to hit a “like” button.
In 2018, we can expect this technology to continue to be perfected and incorporated into company websites. Soon, web interactions will become seamless. Imagine a website that already knows exactly what your customer is looking for by simply analyzing their past interactions with your company. Customer service via the web is becoming faster and more efficient every day thanks to these new technologies. Don’t overlook them in your web design.
VOICE USER INTERFACE AND SEARCH
A voice user interface is sometimes referred to as natural language processing, Simply put, it refers to human interaction with a computer in the form of speech. Examples of voice user interfaces include Alexan, Siri, and Cortana. This technology actually dates back to the 1950s when the Audrey system was developed. The system only recognized digits from a single voice, so obviously we’ve come a long way! Voice user interfaces can now understand and act on complex voice commands. When combined with machine learning, these interfaces can predict your needs before you even complete the command.
Expect to see websites with their own voice user interfaces or integrating with existing ones. With voice search also on the rise, be sure your website content is conversational, as people tend to interact differently when they use voice commands. For example, a person looking for the nearest flower shop might type in “flower shop raleigh” into Google, but might ask Siri, “where is the nearest flower shop?”
Seamless interactions are another theme for 2018. Implementing chatbots and voice user interfaces allow customers to interact with your website without having to click or wait for a page to reload. Micro-interactions are another design element you can sprinkle throughout your website to improve communication. An example of this would be allowing a user to leave a simple review by scrolling over a number of stars instead of submitting a form.
It seems like every time you read your favorite news site, there’s a story about a malicious hacker, a serious data breach, or a malware attack. Security is at the forefront of our minds and it’s taking center stage when it comes to web design and development. Google has already taken steps to notify users of potentially harmful websites. As you think about your web design, be sure to consider the security of your customer’s information. Make sure your security certificate is updated on all pages. People will only interact with your website, download your content, and share their information if they trust you.
TAKING RISKS, REAPING REWARDS
Creating rich web experiences means using new technologies and introducing them to your clients. It can feel a bit risky, but the right web design team and the right tools are only a click away. The future is now and it’s a great opportunity to WOW your customers. Make 2018 the year you throw caution to the wind and finally create that 360 video of your awesome production facility or that 3D model of your newest drone. Give your customer the experience of a lifetime and you will have a customer for life.