Website of the Year 2016

This year’s WOTY was off the chart thanks to the amazing WebGL enhanced 2016 showcase site built in collaboration by CSS Design Awards DUNCKELFELD, Mikha Makhoul, and Cables.

See the WOTY 2016 showcase site »

The CSSDA Website of the Year 2016 showcase site
2338 sites, 100+ esteemed judges, 1 WOTY winner and 31 Best in Class recipients… all wrapped in a silky smooth WebGL powered experience.

CSS Design Awards is the world’s largest independently operated web award platform thanks to an amazing community of agencies, freelancers, judges and fans. With more Facebook followers than all other award platforms (230K) and top two for visitations (Alexa), winning WOTY is a major achievement that stamps a special peer reviewed mark of distinction on the talented winner.

Each year we celebrate the greatest sites from our daily and monthly winners via a special showcase designed and developed in collaboration with leading innovators from around the world. This year one of Germany’s leading creative agencies, DUNCKELFELD, stepped up to the plate along with interactive director, designer & technologist Mikha Makhoul and Cables, a model kit for creating beautiful interactive content.

And the winner is…

We congratulate 84.Paris for being chosen by over 110 esteemed judges as the best site of 2016 with their amazing work Because Recollection. Please join us in raising a virtual glass in celebration of their achievement!

Top 10 scoring sites for 2016:

Because Recollection by 84.Paris = 8.60
Resn by Resn = 8.45
Falter’s Inferno by WILD, Fifth Music, Salon Alpin & Jung von Matt = 8.41
Waaark by Waaark = 8.32
Cryptaris Mission by Tool, McCann Worldgroup, U.S. Army & Plan 8 = 8.20
KIKK Festival 2016 by Dogstudio = 8.01
Converse Diamonds by Resn & Anomaly = 8.00
Kontra K: Next To You by UNIT9, Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg, Maximilian Niemann & Four Music = 7.99
Cavalier Conqueror of Excellence by Your Majesty = 7.96
Collapse by BETC Digital & Make Me Pulse = 7.94

See all best in class winners »

Deconstructing WOTY 2016 ~ what have we learned?

This year passed by like a tropical storm of pure creativity. It was a fast and furious affair that saw no lapse in the level of genius compared with previous years. Colors became richer with black making a welcome comeback, simplism made its mark, illustration matured, interactivity was greater and more integral, and all were topped off with smooth page transitions and stunning visuals.

New technologies like WebGL were used intelligently rather than being a clunky afterthought and VR has begun its climb to the top of trend-lists.

To sum it up in one word, we’d say that 2016 was the year that digital became truly beautiful.

Experiential design is here to stay with many sites of 2016 demonstrating more app like qualities regardless of the tech used. While some sites relied on SPA (single page application) methodologies, others stuck to the tried and true core of HTML/CSS/JS with some interesting developments in-between. Frameworks were utilized seamlessly and underpinning all sites was a far greater understanding of UX from a “real world” point of view.

Thankfully the adage “less is more” has become almost a law upon itself that is revolutionizing the mobile experience. Screen realty has become like royalty and needs to be treated with respect and purpose. Calls to action have become invisible, options for users have become cut to the bone and even the once nightmare IE scenario has finally been put to rest.

The dawning of the digital era has become as bright as the mid-day sun and new challenges such as finding the best uses for VR will be facing designers in 2017. Some truly amazing people are crafting this binary world into digital perfection so please raise your virtual glass once again as we say goodbye to WOTY 2016 and welcome another fantastic year ahead!

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Originally published at