Your website is a vital part of your business and it’s often your first touch point with customers. We know that companies and organizations can use the Internet to effectively tell their story to audiences around the world, 24/7 from wherever the end user may be.
At ZOO Media Group, we’re passionate about helping innovative companies and inspiring organizations tell their story online through the development of custom designed and developed websites. When a new client approaches us, we don’t want to provide them with a digital solution that’s already old, stale or passé. Our goal is to create a solution that’s on the cutting edge of design and technology.
Here, we’ve accumulated our top web design trends that combine attractive design with user-friendly functionality.
Mobile-Friendly Design Is A Must!
We all know that the rise of smart phones and tablets has changed the way we use the Internet, but did you know that 70% of Internet access is through a mobile device? Navigation menus need to be easy to use for one-handed mobile web visitors. Voice search, geo-location and conversation bots are becoming standard fare as users become even more connected to the web.
In the past, websites were designed for desktops and would add a mobile-friendly design, almost as an afterthought. Now, the reverse is true. Because of the popularity of smartphone surfing, websites are primarily designed with the mobile user in mind and then a version is developed that will work with desktop users. This is definitely a case of keeping with the times.
First impressions count! Did you know that 50% of web visitors will leave your site if it takes longer than three seconds to load? That’s not a chance you want to take. And, because Google prioritizes sites that load faster, the quicker your site loads the higher it will rank in search results. That’s not to say you need a sparse website, just incorporate elements in a way that won’t slow things down.
Modern website design looks almost nothing like it did when it first emerged in the mid to late 1990’s. Back then, pages were filled with long paragraphs of detailed information, lots of links and lots of clipart (remember clip art?) – it bombarded the senses and was often overwhelming for the eyes and brain to process.
Minimalist website design emphasizes the use of large, high quality images, text and statements that are carefully chosen and utilizes plenty of whitespace. One of the reasons for this is because of our previous point about responsive web design. Users on smartphones, in particular, may have a hard time seeing and comprehending overly cluttered website design.
Nice, clean designs are preferred, which take a thoughtful approach on behalf of the web designer to understand the balance between user engagement and design.
Easy Interaction With Content
Fresh and relevant content is a major source of traffic and lead generation, but website visitors are looking for more flexibility, less friction, and simplified interactions. Our ZOO Media Group has a “less is more” philosophy when it comes to design.
A minimalist, uncluttered design with effective white space and personalized content is the best way to connect with your site’s visitors. They basically want to know 2 things:
- What do you offer?
- How can it benefit them?
You don’t need to write an essay using grammar straight out of an English textbook. Communicate in a clear, professional way, but in a way that your readers will understand and relate to the content.
Blog posts, company updates or ‘how to’ articles are a great way to communicate with an audience if they’re well written, relatable and easy to comprehend. Break up long sections of text with images and videos that add interest to the topic. Make the content easy to read, engaging and helpful rather than just words on a page.
Illustrations For The Win!
While stock images are popular in design and content strategies, more and more companies are looking to stand out from the crowd. Illustrations allow you to focus on a gender or age group more generically. With stock photos, an actual human being becomes the face of your product, which leaves room to exclude potential customers. But with illustrations – both custom and stock, things like race, gender, and nationality can be less defined, giving the image and product wider appeal. Illustrations can be tailored to your brand, have more personality, and introduce an element of fun.
While it may be necessary to include real data as it relates to your product or service, no one said it has to be boring! With mobile-friendly design comes mobile-friendly content development, which includes simple charts, infographics and images. Instead of stating statistics that might bore your audience, why not use a creative chart or infographic to present the same statistics, but in a way that’s creative and easy to understand.
360-degree Views, 3D Images, Looping Video and Cinemographs
360-degree videos, looping videos, 3D images and cinemographs have become widely available and used on major social media channels and web developers are eager to incorporate these elements in websites. With the ability to use file formats that are scalable and don’t adversely affect page load times, these visual elements are effective on mobile platforms and help your brand stand out in a sea of static imagery.
Video has a way of capturing attention and keeps visitors on your site longer, possibly converting to a lead. Video can also explain complicated information in a concise and easy to digest format, eliminating the need for large blocks of text and multiple photos.
It’s About the End Users
At ZOO Media Group, we develop websites firmly focused on the end user. While this seems like it would be obvious, this isn’t the case with many web development firms. Too often, some ambitious web developers are more interested in showing off what they can do technically, rather than understanding how to help clients connect with their customers online in a seamless and effortless way.
At ZOO Media Group, we get it.
We take the time to listen to our clients and develop a strategy that resonates with their specific target market. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter if a website uses cutting edge technology if it completely misses the target of properly serving the end-user. This is why it’s more important than ever to choose your website development firm carefully, not leaving it to chance or dependent solely on budget. Contact us today to get that web presence you’ve always wanted for your business and enjoy the entire process along the way.