Each year we see new web design trends take over the Internet – last year web designs were all about responsiveness, simplicity and things such as infinite scroll. However, 2013 is over now and it is time to take a look at the things that are most likely to be happening in 2014. In this post we’ll discuss some of the most popular web design trends for 2014, we’ll point out their pros and cons and hopefully we’ll help you make up your mind and decide which web design trend is most likely to dominate the world of web designers in 2014. Let’s start!
Ok, typography isn’t a new thing and we can agree on this. However, how often do you see typography that is actually unique and attracts your interest? Many web designers underestimate the importance of unique and well-designed typography and this is one of the major mistakes they make. However, in 2014 we expect to see more examples of great typography that is different from everything else out there. These types of typography will certainly be the new big thing among web designers, so it is very likely that in 2014 we’ll see many websites using typography fonts different from the standard ones.
Apple was the first major company to implement flat design in their interface and they did that with the release of iOS7. Flat design was one of exciting features of iOS7 we know. If you are at least slightly similar with Photoshop or other image editing programs, then you probably know that designers often use simple effects such as drop shadow and gradients to enhance the looks of their designs. However, Apple didn’t just take advantage of one or two effects – they basically added every design element to their final product and the result is a sleek flat design that will certainly be used by many other designers in 2014.
Large Hero Areas are Replacing Sliders
Sliders were used quite often during the past two years, but it didn’t bring the success most people thought it would. In fact, sliders failed to attract the attention of the visitor and the only thing they did was to look good. This is why large hero areas are being used by web designers – basically, this is the “intro” area of each website and it consists of an image and a little bit of text. We know this doesn’t sound very impressive, but a large hero area designed by a skilled artist will certainly impress your visitors.
Responsive web design made it possible to quickly access any website from any type of mobile device. However, responsive web design isn’t as good as we want it to be, so it is very possible that in 2014 we’ll see many new things that will make websites more accessible via mobile devices. Some of the things that most peoples want to see are improved social media integration, mobile email subscriptions, long/infinite scrolling and faster loading times. Even if half of these things get improved in 2014, then we are certain that mobile users will be satisfied.
Videos Will Start Replacing Text
Many people enjoy reading, but the majority of Internet users prefer listening instead of reading. This is why many web designers and developers try to replace walls of text with short videos that explain everything the visitor needs to know. Videos are already often being used creatively in combination with large hero areas, so don’t be surprised if your favorite website implements this idea in its 2014 design. The reason for this change is that videos are now very easy to create, edit and share. Other than that, they are also easier to understand and in some cases a 3-minute video can be more useful than 1,000 words of text.
Long scrolling websites weren’t something uncommon several years ago, but in the past couple of years that concept of long scrolling was replaced by more organized and more accessible content. However, with the newest responsive web design trend and some of the other elements implemented in websites, we may seem long scrolling make its big return. If content is organized in the right way, then long scrolling may turn into one of the best ways to browse a website. Of course, implementing long scrolling won’t be easy, but if it is done right, then we are certain that the website’s regular visitors will appreciate the innovation used to improve the web design.
Basic Color Schemes
Color is always a part of web design trend discussions and this case isn’t any different. Minimalistic designs have taken over the web, so in 2014 we’ll most probably see more and more websites that adopt a color scheme of just one or two colors. One of the best combinations in 2014 will certainly be flat design and simple color scheme rather than bright and colorful websites, so we expect that minimalistic designs in single page websites or in larger websites will become even more popular. “Colorless” designs will gain more popularity as well – white, black and all shades of grey can result in a magnificent, minimalistic website design.
Simple yet Informative Content
Website content is another thing that needs to be improved in 2014. The average Internet user wants to quickly learn the most important news without having to deal with a huge wall of text. This is why content will become simpler in 2014 and we expect that many websites will adopt Twitter-styled content.
No More Sidebars
Sometimes sidebars are very helpful, but when talking about blogs and magazine-type websites, they can turn out to be quite a distraction for the reader. This is one of the main reasons why web designers are looking forward to creating sidebar-free responsive web designs that will allow the reader to focus all of their attention on the content itself. Removing the sidebar may not seem like a big deal to you, but it will certainly enhance reading experience and significantly reduce the number of distractions readers encounter.
No More Simple Images
Adding images to your website is an easy task if you don’t want to create something unique. However, if you really want to grab the attention of your readers, then you might have to manipulate the images slightly in order to give them a more unique look. In 2014, we’ll see more images that have been enhanced with blur effects, color/gradient/pattern overlays or even Instagram-style effects. Well-edited images attract more attention and can emphasize on your website’s style and purpose.
Regular navigation is definitely becoming very complicated, because often users have to browse through a number of menus before they reach their desired destination. Furthermore, if you are visiting a website for the first time, it can be very difficult to find the thing you need. Scroll-to-Sections is one of the things that will probably gain more popularity in 2014, because this web design concept can greatly enhance user navigation and give your users a better looking and simple browsing experience.
In short, scroll-to-sections is a new idea that gives users the opportunity to browse the website’s pages by using their mouse/keyboard scroll. Every page has a distinct color scheme, background and attractive typography, so the users won’t be confused by the new navigation method.
In the past web designers were limited by things such as low speed Internet and the low resolutions supported by computer monitors. However, nowadays everyone has access to high-speed Internet and high-resolution monitors and mobile devices. This allows web designers to have more creative freedom, but it also makes their job a bit more difficult, because they need to adapt their designs to different types of devices.
Images are often used in website designs, particularly the royalty free stock images, but in order to give visitors fast loading times and great performance, web designers have to use adaptive layouts and adaptive photography. This is definitely one of the biggest trends of 2014 and we’ll see more adaptive photographic backgrounds that automatically scale depending on the device used to browse the website.
Fixed Body & Header Sections
Fixed headers are already used in many websites and they’ve proven to be a huge success. This is why we expect that this element will be implemented in many more websites during 2014. Basically, a fixed header allows the reader to quickly navigate through the website without having to constantly scroll or up or down.
Vertical Content Alignment
Horizontal alignment is used almost everywhere and it definitely doesn’t have many flaws – it is sleek, well-organized and provides users with a great browsing experience. However, if you want to be a bit more unique, then why don’t you try a vertical content alignment layout? These templates aren’t used by many people out there, but there are definitely quite interesting and we won’t be surprised if this concept’s popularity grows more during 2014 for enhanced browser compatibility.
Infographics grew in popularity during the past two years and most people enjoy reading the information provided by them. However, most of these users think that Infographics can be improved a lot and this is why we expect interactive Infographics to become the next big thing. Thanks to interactive Infographics, users can have access to more detailed statistics and read only the data that interests them the most.
Animated GIFs Return
Animated GIFs are rarely used nowadays, but in some cases they can be the last piece of the puzzle that gives you the perfect website design and layout. Thanks to GIF animations, the web designer can attract the reader’s attention to a specific area. Of course, GIF animations have many other uses as well, but it is up to web designers to decide how they’ll implement them in their next website design.
So in this post we tried to sum up all possible web design trends for 2014, now it’s your turn to use these trends in web design properly along with using the best tools to run your website in a latest fashion!