5 Years, 5 Trends: A Look at the Past and Future of Web Design

Website trends come and go, and some stick around and evolve into something better. By taking a closer look at how past website trends have evolved into current trends, we can develop our own insights into the future of web design. Here are 5 website trends over the past 5 years that tell us a great deal about the future of web design.

1) Skeleton Screens

Skeleton screens are a blank page with visual elements that act as placeholders where content is gradually loaded. Facebook is the most popular example of a skeleton screen. Skeleton screens eliminate the sense of waiting visitors get from staring at progress bars and spinners and reinforces a sense of progress in their minds. As a result, unique visitors do not bounce off of your website. Progress bars and spinners are a thing of the past, and skeleton screens are the future of lowering bounce rates.

2) Less is More

What happened to flashy web design with cool illustration, drop shadows and gradients? Mobile browsing. That\’s what happened to flashy web design. Having a mobile friendly website is important, and solid blocks of color with crisp edges simply work better on a smaller smart phone screen. Simple designs with flatter design elements improve user navigation and experience on devices of all sizes. The less is more design philosophy is definitely here to stay.

3) Cinemagraphs

A cinemagraph is an eye-catching still photo with one subtle, moving element. Think of it as a mixture of still photo and GIF. While professional photos are not obsolete in web design, the subtle movement in cinemagraphs do feel more engaging on a webpage. Combined with clever copy and a strategically placed CTA button, cinemagraphs can do wonders for conversion rates. Since they are more engaging than photos and not as distracting as GIFs, they are perfect for adding subtle movement to a webpage.

4) Shopping Cart Marketing

Shopping cart marketing is a clever up-sale tactic where a website adds suggestions for products or bundles that compliment what visitors have in their shopping cart. Amazon is the most popular example of a website that does shopping cart marketing, but any business, big or small, can use this effective tactic. Simple online carts that only complete transactions miss opportunities for up-sales, and shopping cart marketing is a profitable trend that is here to stay.

5) Engagement Bots

Over the past five years, we have seen new and innovative ways to engage with potential customers with engagement bots. Chat bots have become more than tech support tools. Big brands are using them as genuine engagement tools. Companies like H&M, Pizza Hut and Sephora use engagement bots to help customers choose products, order services and educate them on how to use their products. Businesses are developing innovative ways to improve user experience with engagement bots everyday. This website trend is sure to stick around and only get better.

Compelling web design is a powerful tool for branding, marketing, visibility, conversions and sales. Over the years, old web design trends have morphed into new and exciting technologies that improve user experience, keep visitors on your website and increase conversion rates. If you want to know more about effective website trends, contact us today.

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