Web design is always evolving and 2021 is likely to bring new design trends any website owner should be familiar with. It's important to have a website that's up to date and that meets the needs and expectations of visitors. This doesn't mean you need to blindly follow every new trend, of course. You also want to remain true to your brand. However, it's always worth keeping up with the latest developments in web design so you're aware of your options. The following are some of the biggest web design trends that are likely to dominate in 2021.
Voice search is one of the fastest-growing technological trends. With the help of devices such as the Echo and Google Voice Assistant, consumers are quickly adapting to the convenience of speaking rather than typing queries. When creating a website, you now have to keep voice search technology in mind. As voice search gets more popular, search engine optimization is moving more in the direction of natural conversation. The days of keyword stuffing are long gone as Google increasingly favors content that flows naturally.
Another consideration related to voice search is to optimize your site for featured snippets. Voice search queries often bring visitors to featured snippets, also known as Position Zero on Google. These results are displayed above the regular listings and are extremely valuable. The best way to optimize for featured snippets is to present a concise summary of a page's information in a format such as questions & answers or a list.
Personalizing experience for each user is another trend that is sure to grow in 2021. Consider how large sites such as Amazon and Netflix personalize what visitors see. Netflix, for example, uses its algorithm to recommend content based on viewers' past behavior. Amazon similarly recommends products by taking note of customers' shopping habits. Personalization features may include:
It's important for today's businesses to offer their customers an omnichannel experience that makes it easy to make contact on multiple devices and platforms such as websites, social media, mobile phones, email, and more. Google reports that the customer journey can involve as many as 500 touchpoints. You can no longer assume that one or two visits to your website is all it takes to gain a lead or customer. Incorporating the idea of omnichannel UX into web design means providing users with a seamless experience, so they can easily switch from one channel to another. This includes elements such as:
More and more artists, musicians, and other creative types are selling their work online. While portfolio websites for artists aren't new, there are emerging trends that are changing the way artists display their work. At the same time, vlogs (video blogs) and podcasts are really taking off right now. All of these websites link to creative content, often on third-party sites. Vloggers have YouTube channels. Podcasters use platforms such as iTunes and SoundCloud. Artists sell their work on Etsy. Musicians have their songs on Spotify. Web designers are finding creative ways to display content links for videos, podcasts, works of art, songs, and albums. There are now many themes dedicated to the needs of artists and creators. For example, there are quite a few WordPress podcasting themes. Websites for creative content need to be designed with features such as:
As AI technology progresses, features such as chatbots are getting more sophisticated. According to one study, 67% of customers used chatbots at least once in the past year. Although chatbots have been around for a while, we're seeing some significant changes in their functionality and how they're used. For example, many more small and mid-sized businesses are using them. Oracle found that 80% of businesses plan to use chatbots.
Chatbots are also getting more intelligent. While we're still a few years away from the kind of AI robots featured in science fiction movies, chatbots are getting more helpful and personalized. As Chatbot Magazine points out, conversational chatbots are now being used by hospitals, real estate agents, financial institutions, and others to provide helpful information.
The use of 3D elements is not new but it's a trend that's getting more popular. One reason for this is that it's gotten easier and cheaper to incorporate this technology into a website. In the past, 3D was used mostly for specialized purposes such as gaming, real estate, or building models in fields such as architecture. However, designers as well as the public are discovering that 3D can make any type of website more visually interesting.
Creative Bloq shares some inspiring examples of 9 Brilliant Uses of 3D in Web Design. The featured websites include businesses that wouldn't traditionally be associated with 3D design such as Stripe, a payment processor, and Campo Alle Comete, a wine company. 3D design is no longer confined to specialized and technical fields but is being employed to make any website distinctive and memorable.
More websites are being designed with a dark mode option, giving users more control over their experience. There are several advantages to dark mode.
Dark mode is being implemented more and more, in mobile apps as well as website themes and templates. Not all users prefer dark mode and some will want to switch back and forth between dark and light. However, there's no denying that dark mode is an emerging trend.
More websites are created every day. In order to stand apart, you need to incorporate design elements that capture people's attention while providing them easy access to the information they need. Many of the features highlighted above, such as chatbots and voice search, help visitors benefit from the latest technology. Others, such as 3D and dark mode, let you present information in a more attractive and alluring manner. When planning your web design strategy, you want to balance factors such as convenience, educating your audience, and aesthetics.
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