Web design today is far different than it was only 10 years ago.

Web design best practices are constantly evolving, keeping the focus on creating a powerful user experience.

So, what’s changed in 2021 so far? And what will the future of web design look like? These are great questions.

For many companies, a website is a way to generate brand awareness, build customer loyalty, and provide clarity around the products and services you offer.

Let’s take a look at some of the new trends to look out for in the coming year, and be sure to keep your eyes peeled for brand new ones as they transpire.

1. Keep the Focus on Accessibility

Even today, Google is heavily focusing on fast load times and mobile-friendly design as the pillars of modern web design, but there are other ways to improve your page’s accessibility.

Accessibility is everything today. Some governments have even required larger companies to create accessible websites for the visually impaired.

Those with disabilities will appreciate extra features like high-contrast color schemes, alt text for images, and easy-to-understand copy text. A dedication to accessibility improves your search engine optimization and expands your potential audience.

2. Animations & Illustrations

It’s no secret that visuals are a common component of the modern website. Videos and images convey more meaning and style than the plain text-only pages of the past could.

Now that web design has evolved even further, we’re starting to see organizations add their own cartoon illustrations to their web pages, all in a consistent art style that adds personal character to an otherwise plain look.

These illustrations are typically minimalistic with few details to allow viewers to gauge what they are quickly. For instance, a B2B company might have a basic drawing of a board meeting made up of simple geometric shapes on its front page.

3. Dark Mode

On top of apps and operating systems embracing the trend, dark mode is seeing another rise with web design in recent years. Even your smartphone might automatically switch to a dark UI at night.

Websites started out with white backgrounds since it reflected how a page would look on paper. As the public became more oriented with computer literacy, recent trends have pointed towards more dark-themed websites.

Dark mode is not only easier on the eyes for nighttime viewing; it also gives a sense of sleekness to your webpage, hence why tech and fashion companies often use it. You may also find that details are more visible with a dark color scheme, which tends to emphasize contrast.

4. Emoticons & Icons

For businesses serving casual or younger markets, the use of emojis and emoticons have made a splash in web design. Emojis are used often now that many people are familiar with communicating through text and social media. There’s no better or more succinct way to express emotion than through these cute little icons.

Emotes are an excellent way to connect with your audience in a manner that’s familiar to them while not being too formal. Remember, though, that the use of such icons should not be present in strongly formal situations.

5. Geometric Designs

Ever seen a company’s page consist of geometric rectangles with content neatly organized into each section? Grids are a simple yet powerful way to structure your website. Blocks of content are much easier to digest than a full list, after all.

Some extra garnish may be color-coded boxes to enhance legibility. Don’t be afraid to be creative with the placement of geometric shapes, as the design should not be too rigid.

6. Interactivity

Make it so that visitors to your web page not only absorb its content but also interact with it as well. Interactivity is a growing trend in website development. While you don’t necessarily have to have mini-games and full surveys on your site, use motion, draggable elements, and other tools to your advantage.

Interactive maps and diagrams are perfect for conveying information in an effective way. For example, customers might be interested in how strong the impact of your product or service might be in an interactive “before and after” diagram. Leverage the power of interactive web design to maximize engagement in your audience.

7. Minimalism

Sometimes less really is more. Minimalism certainly isn’t a new development, but you definitely see a trend towards the simple and terse in recent years. This design principle states that only the essential elements are enough.

Many businesses opt for minimalistic web pages because too many details often confuse and irritate visitors. The design also draws more attention to your content in addition to looking better to some people.

8. Multimedia

Technology has progressed far enough for us to build more than just text-based sites, and companies are more than happy to take advantage of it. Adding visuals and even audio to a company website greatly increases its appeal.

It’s important to note that you shouldn’t overdo it. Too much activity at once can be overwhelming to your audience, and avoid annoying auto-playing videos. Allow users to click the play button if they are interested.

9. Parallax Scrolling

A parallax effect involves having the background image move slower than the foreground image, resulting in an illusion of depth when moving the camera. It’s a classic effect present in cartoons as far back as the 1930s.

You can bring a web page illustration to life with this effect. We recommend using it both sparingly and subtly, as an overt parallax can be distracting and even disorienting to some website visitors.

10. Serif Typefaces

Serif typefaces are the opposite of sans-serif typefaces. Serif is known as a traditional text design with decorative strokes at the ends of letter stems. These small details rarely looked good on low-resolution displays, so older websites rarely used them.

Simpler sans-serif designs were used instead in the early years of the Internet. But with new advances in display technologies, we’re starting to see a comeback of serif typefaces. The extra detail of the letters helps improve readability and adds a touch of elegance to the webpage. You can also take advantage of serif to craft a “classic” look for your business.

Stay Ahead of Web Design Trends With Globalgraphics

The world of web design moves fast. A modern website often requires ongoing maintenance, image swaps, copy upgrades, and more.

How are you staying on top of web design trends? With Globalgraphics, you can create powerful experiences that improve brand awareness, consideration, and loyalty. Get in touch with our team today to get started.