This year has been a big year for web design. The continued rise of mobile phones and tablets has greatly impacted the way contemporary designers create websites. The overall trend is to ditch the “flash” from the past, to gravitate towards designs embodying the mantra, “less is more.” To have a kick-ass website in 2014, you need to realize that the following trends are the ones making the biggest impacts.
The Rise of Parallax
To the unfamiliar, the word parallax might conjure up images of some strange disease, or a fictional city in a comic book. But in terms of web design, parallax is something we are all likely familiar with already. If you have ever visited a one page site packed with impressive graphics and eye-catching typography, you’ve seen a parallax design. You might also have noticed that clicking on a menu item does not take you to a new page, rather it scrolls the page down to the appropriate section.
These innovative sites incorporate many of the 2014 design themes which will be discussed below. On a whole, they are intended to be short and sweet. They give the visitor all the necessary info in a minutia of the time it would take to browse a normal, paged website. Due to this, parallax sites can be ass-kicking conversion machines for an online business.
The Monochromatic Effect
If you’ve browsed modern sites, you’ve probably noticed the use of subtle colors instead of the power hues of the past. Nowadays, the use of one main color is increasingly becoming the norm. It is referred to as monochromatic coloring because in some cases sites only have one color accenting a white or gray background. Designers often employ a secondary color, such as a different shade of the main color, to add some light contrast. Use of less colors shifts the viewer’s attention to kick-ass content that the site owner is sharing.
Flat Design in the New 3-D
Related to the monochromatic method of design is the increasingly popular ues of flat designing. This is the preference for simple, two dimensional graphics over the 3-D or animated graphics of the past. Graphic designers are dropping shadows and gradients for basic images that are more likely to stick in the web visitor’s mind. If you are struggling to picture flat design, think iOS or Facebook. Each uses simple, yet striking, icons and logos which appeal to a wide base of users and provide a highly effective user experience.
Images Make Content King
By now you’ve heard the overused phrase that “content is king.” However, in 2014, the word content no longer refers solely to text. Sites are now incorporating images and icons to communicate with users in the same way that plain text did in the past. Info-graphics and videos are proving to be more effective ways to reach users in an entertaining and engaging manner. The popularity of mobile devices helped spur the prevalence of graphic centered websites because mobile users generally don’t have the time or desire to sift through paragraphs of text.
You’ll also notice that sites which are using text are doing so sparingly. Designers are now opting for quick bursts of information, in a Twitter like manner, to get to the point in little time as possible. This appeals to modern culture’s desire to get what it needs, exactly when it wants it.
Engaging Video Backgrounds
An interesting addition to the trends of 2014 include the use of movie-like backgrounds on sites. This technique harkens back to the long forgotten flash websites which ruled the scene a decade ago. However, today’s video backgrounds are fresh and engaging, and immediately draw in website visitors. The overall site design is very simple, with the video in the background and a layer of text on top. Yet, nothing tells a story better than a video, and this innovative trend is sure to become a high desired feature for clients. After all, what could be a more kick-ass way of promoting your skydiving business than by looping jump footage in the background, while bold faced type details your business on the foreground?