First impressions are everything. I’m sure you’ve heard these words a million times before. And never has a phrase rang more true than when talking about web design.
In today’s day and age however, first impressions are hardly made by person-to-person interactions anymore. Chances are, before a potential customer or client meets with you in person to talk business, they’ve already found you and your company online. As a result, your website is making the first impression for you, and as a business owner you have to be sure it’s making a good one.
If you already have a website for your company, you’re on the right track. If you do not, you may want to seriously consider catching up on how to do business in the digital age. But just having a website isn’t enough. Even if you developed a user-friendly and aesthetically pleasing website just two years ago, you’re already behind when it comes to the latest technology.
Web design is constantly evolving. A design or layout that your customers and clients may have been happy with two years ago is probably the same layout they are frustrated with today. Simply look at how fast responsive web designs have taken the digital world by storm over the last year. Users can now do more with their smart phones, tablets and notebooks, and they expect websites to do more for them too. Because of the quickly changing landscape of web design, businesses need to keep up with the latest trends in order to make that crucially important positive first impression, satisfy user expectations and most importantly, drive revenue.
Here is a list of the latest and greatest responsive web design features that are quickly taking over the digital landscape.
Responsive Web Design
Photo: Harrison Pensa
In the past, web designers would display the same fixed website on all devices. Whether you were viewing a site on your desktop computer, or on your small smartphone screen, the site stayed the same. When the IPhone revolutionized web browsing for mobile devices, web developers had to find a way to make navigating the web easier. This is where responsive web design comes in. With responsive web design, the site can determine each device’s size and capabilities, and adjust the layout and resolution accordingly. Having a responsive site is one of the most important aspects of web design today. In a world where first impressions are made within the first seven seconds of interacting with your company’s touch points, a responsive website can make all the difference.
Single Page Websites
Single page websites with scrolling navigation are popular right now because of their user-friendly and simplistic layouts. All of the website’s content can be found in one place and scrolling navigation makes the site easy to use. Single page websites are perfect for companies and organizations that do not have, or want, a lot of content to present and manage.
Photo: Kelsey Drake
Made popular by Pinterest a few years back, card layout designs are more than just a trend. The practical layout gives users everything they need – image, headline, call to action – all in one compact place. This container-style design is ideal for sites that have a lot of content and information that might otherwise be overlooked if users had to keep clicking deeper and deeper into the site navigation.
Photo: Google Now
The next dimension of the flat design craze, Google’s material design layout is kicking it old school – so to speak – by re-introducing the element of skeuomorphism.
Before flat design, web developers used skeuomorphism to imitate the physical world. Online tools were made to look like their real-world counterparts. When flat design emerged onto the scene, developers sought to strip everything down to the basics. The illusion of three-dimensionality was no more, and it was replaced with a focus on iconography, colour and typography.
Material design offers a degree of depth to flat design with grid-based layouts, responsive animations and light and shadow effects. Material design is ideal for companies looking to convey information with animation, or for businesses planning to communicate across different platforms, such as a website and a mobile app.
Hover animation are designed to give instant feedback to users who aren’t quite sure what they’re looking for. Incorporating hover animation into your web design allows your users to have access to important information without actually having to seek it out themselves. Users simply hover over elements, such as images and buttons on the webpage to uncover the information they maybe didn’t know they were looking for, but end up being glad to have found.
Photo: Sweet Basil
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but what about a striking, HD image? Surely that is worth more. Web developers today are looking to appeal to users’ strong sense of vision in order to make a lasting impression and grab attention. Whether it’s a large full screen background image, or a series of rotating photos, Hero Images will add aestheticism and impact to your website’s content.
Background Videos and Animation
Like the power of the picture, videos and animation can go a long way in creating a positive first impression for your company. When executed properly, an animated background video can add dynamic visibility to a site and enhance a page’s content. The key to using this design is simplicity and moderation. You don’t want to overwhelm or distract your user. Play around with frame rates to create gentle and seamless movements of the entire image.
Put your website development in good hands
At ZOO Media Group, it’s our job and our passion to know what website designs are trending, working best and serving clients unique needs. Don’t let your company fade into the background with an out-dated web presence. Trust our experienced web design and development agency to custom-build the perfect, cutting-edge website for you.