Web design trends change fairly rapidly. There are several reasons for this. First, styles are constantly changing each year, and the look of websites tends to evolve in order to adhere to the latest style trends we’re seeing in society at large. Second, Google’s search algorithms are constantly updating, and it’s crucial that web design best practices continue to address the latest priorities in the search algorithms.
Due to these rapidly changing trends, it should come as no surprise that website features which were considered innovative just a few years ago may now be viewed as tired or outdated. If you want your website to continue to rank well on the search engines and convert visitors into new customers, it’s crucial that you stay on top of the latest web design trends. For this reason, we typically recommend that our clients redesign their website every three years.
If your website is more than three years old, you don’t need to panic. You can still potentially achieve your desired results. That being said, you should start seriously thinking about a redesign in this situation to avoid waiting so long that your website looks very outdated and fails to adhere to SEO best practices.
As Denver’s leading web design agency, we’re constantly staying on top of the latest industry trends. Now that we’re almost halfway through 2022, we can see which of the forecasted trends at the start of the year are here to stay. The following 7 trends seem to be most prominent in the website design community right now.
Simplicity in website design has been on the rise over the last few years. Many web users have been expressing a preference for websites that are less complex. The extreme version of this is a single-page website which eliminates clunky, convoluted navigation menus and internal linking structures. Instead, users simply have to scroll down to access the information they’re looking for.
Single-page websites are effective because users are less likely to leave the site if there’s no confusion over where they should click to find the information they need. All they need to do is look further down the page. A/B testing has even found that for the right websites, using a single-page structure increased conversion rates by up to 37.5%.
Keep in mind that not all websites are ideally suited for a single-page format. Many businesses require a more complex navigation structure in order to convey all of their messaging, provide detailed information about their product or service offerings, and convey the thought leadership necessary to establish themselves as a trusted authority.
In general, single-page websites tend to be most effective when there is a narrower subject matter. For this reason, this becomes an excellent option for portfolio websites. When a single-page solution is viable, it gives the web designer an opportunity to be more creative in the layout of the site in order to ensure distracting elements are kept to a minimum.
Greater Emphasis on Text in Hero Sections
This emphasis in simplicity has resulted in another trend being seen in a wide range of websites – a de-emphasis on hero images in favor of text-based hero sections.
The hero section refers to the top portion of the page, which typically is designed as a banner. Traditionally, the hero section would emphasize a bold, eye-catching image that sets a tone for what the reader will see on the rest of the page. However, an increasing number of websites are choosing to reduce or eliminate imagery in the hero section in favor of a convention that relies on eye-catching typography to capture the reader’s attention. These hero sections function more like a traditional newspaper headline, providing a bold statement that entices the reader to discover the information that lies below.
Innovative web designers are using fonts, shapes, layouts and messaging to craft a creative lead-in to a web page. This provides a fresh approach to conveying brand identity that is striking in its simplicity.
Faster Website Load Times and Page Speed
Building a website with a fast loading time has been important for years, but this trend has gained a renewed emphasis recently due to Google’s 2021 algorithm update, which has given page speed greater emphasis in their ranking factors.
Focusing on page speed isn’t just important for SEO, it’s also crucial to keeping visitors on your website. With 53% of website visitors abandoning a page that takes more than 3 seconds to load, you’re going to lose a lot of traffic with slow page speed.
Pinterest has demonstrated the value of prioritizing page speed. They reduced their load times by 40% and it resulted in a 15% increase in search engine traffic and sign-ups.
Some techniques being used to improve page speed and achieve faster load times include:
- Deferred offscreen image loading
- Reducing the number of fonts used on your website
- Reducing the number of plug-ins used with your website
- Implementing smart content load (only the content seen on the screen is downloaded – the rest of the content will only be loaded as the user scrolls down to read it)
Emphasis on Linework
Web designers are utilizing linework in more creative ways to bring a website to life. Linework can be used to provide contrast to headers, paragraphs, and full sections on a page. They can also give a gallery more flair or help create dynamic grids for a web page.
Effective use of linework can help provide a minimalist impact and create a clean design. By varying the use of thick and thin lines, you can achieve a dramatic impact that draws attention to the most important elements on the page.
Styles are cyclical, and the 90s are back in a big way. While this trend impacts many aspects of our culture, it is also being felt in web design. Many web designers have been incorporating a 90s feel into their websites.
While the 90s marked the early days of web design when people were figuring out their craft, the retro style being used in 2022 websites reflects the wisdom that has been acquired by industry experts over the last three decades. Today’s websites are blending vintage fonts and colors with more modern imagery for a fun, eye-catching design. When used tastefully, this retro 90s flair can significantly enhance your website’s impact.
Bigger, Bolder Typography
Many websites have been experimenting with the use of big, bold typography to make their message stand out more. By combining large, bold fonts with a neutral color pattern, you can create even greater emphasis. In these situations, your font will take on a graphic element that almost functions like an image.
This trend isn’t signaling the end of eye-catching imagery on websites. Instead, the technique can be used to complement your use of imagery, providing your website with powerful contrast. Highlighting key elements of your messaging in large, bold typography can help convey your brand story more effectively to your audience.
Gender Neutral Design
This final trend should come as no surprise since it reflects a greater movement among society towards gender neutrality. Traditional gender stereotypes are being abandoned in favor of a more inclusive approach that assumes both men and women may potentially be interested in the same products and services. For example, men use skincare products and women buy camping equipment. Therefore, websites should reflect this and cater to a broader audience.
This trend means that pink color patterns are being used less frequently for products that have traditionally been considered feminine. You’re also seeing significantly less traditional masculine imagery on websites for products that have typically been considered to be for men.
Other ways in which websites are becoming more gender neutral include:
- Using gender-neutral pronouns (i.e. “they”) in content instead of gendered pronouns such as “he” and “she”
- Not sorting clothes by gender on ecommerce sites
- Offering multiple gender options in forms and dropdown menus (or eliminating gender completely from these items)
- Using more inclusive imagery that appeals to both genders
Webolutions Award-Winning Web Design Elevates Your Success
If you’re planning in designing your new website yourself, incorporating the trends discussed above will help you achieve a finished product that appeals to today’s web user. That being said, building an effective website that reflects the latest web design trends, adheres to SEO best practices, and is optimized to maximize conversions requires extensive expertise. In most situations, you’ll achieve the best results by working with an experienced web design agency.
Webolutions has been providing website design and development services since 1994. Our team includes highly experienced web design professionals who stay on top of the latest trends. Our exclusive Websites Right Methodology™ has been developed over 27 years incorporating the experience, knowledge and lessons learned from building thousands of websites. This unique process creates a far better client experience, increased website marketing performance and vastly superior business results.
With our Websites Right Methodology™, you’ll benefit from a detailed process that includes:
- An in-depth discussion of your website goals
- Collaborative planning of your home page key elements to ensure they convey your brand story
- Creation of website mockups to ensure you love the design before we build the site
- Detailed documentation of functional requirements to guarantee we’re aligned with your specific needs
- Custom programming and development of advanced website functionality
- Tactical content leadership to communicate your story and educate your audience more effectively
- Incorporation of SEO best practices for better search engine rankings
- Post-launch testing and ongoing analysis to ensure your website achieves the goals established at the start of the process
Contact us to schedule a consultation.