With the new year almost upon us, many of us are already wondering what we can expect in the world of web design. Some are suggesting that we may have started to become too complacent. The internet, after all, has now been around for 25 years and this is generally the point at which people start to get set in their ways.
However, internet developers, including the big ones like Google, always bring in new talent, new ideas and new changes. Hence, those of us who have been around for a while, the internet veterans if you like, need to make sure that we are able to keep up. So what should we look out for and prepare ourselves for this coming year?
1 – Larger Images
The first thing you are likely to see are larger pictures that have been properly formatted.
“To properly pull it off, the image should stop at the break, in terms of resolutions and pixels, of the screen. Once the user begins to navigate, they should not continue to see the image, but instead see the content below it.”
This is a direct result of more and more people moving over to Windows 8 and 8.1. The feature that web designers now have to work with when it comes to inserting images is known as “flat design.” This fits in perfectly with the modern user interface. Naturally, the images must also be of very high visual quality and they have to load quickly.
2 – Better Typography
One thing that many people miss from the old days before the internet is working with fancy type fonts. We used to create the most beautiful documents and presentations with various fonts and sizes. Now, we seem pretty focused on Calibri and some of the sans serif fonts. But it seems that a new trend is going to be around better typography, much to the pleasure of those who love beautiful fonts.
“Type kits are becoming more affordable (or free in the case of Google Fonts) and that means there is more freedom for designers working with a smaller budget to bring their typography skills to the web design table.”
In the past, only those with huge budgets were able to purchase fancy typography kits. Fortunately, they are now much more affordable. This allows for the creation of more interesting themes on WordPress blogs, for instance. Type-centric design is now in anyone’s reach and some believe that the internet will now become one giant and beautiful work of art.
3 – Less Web Coding
Another very positive development for everyday people is that there is going to be much less web coding required. Web coding is a hugely complicated field of work, which has left much of the internet unattainable for regular people who do not have experience in this field. Now, it is believed that the required web coding is being reduced significantly, making it far more accessible to people.
“Today, designers can create websites without touching a single line of code, taking advantage of the same powerful features of their graphic design software and outputting W3C validated, clean code.”
This is a massive shift in how work has been done before. With streamlined options where codes are developed automatically as a website grows. This does not mean that web coders will soon be out of a job. There will always be a need for them. However, their role will be less front end and more behind the scenes.
4 – Reduced Importance of Websites Overall
One particular development could be a huge game changer, and that is the decline in the need for websites in general. Once upon a time, if you wanted to compare information, you would have to visit various websites individually, comparing the information in a spreadsheet of your own design. This changed when we saw a rise in comparison websites, which are still very popular today. However, even these are having to take a backseat now, with applications such as Siri giving you all the information you need. In places like China, people almost don’t use websites at all anymore. They simply give Siri or a similar app a voice command and are given all the information they need. As such, content and design are being set free.
“Instead we are sharing content via APIs between applications and sites. Sometimes business owners are choosing to put their content on Facebook, Yelp or Foursquare. They are abandoning the idea of having their own site.”
5 – Webgraphics
Although there are multiple learning styles that people use to absorb information, we are all highly visual as a species. This means that if information is presented in a graph, we are better able to internalize it. This is where infographics came from. In a single infographic, a designer is able to present a great deal of information very quickly. Additionally, people who see the graph are better able to remember the information.
Although infographics are still popular, webgraphics are the next step up. Again, these are graphs designed to provide a lot of information in one go. However, what makes them different is that the user is able to actually interact with the information that has been provided. Furthermore, a webgraphic looks better than an infographic and retention of the information is even higher.
Interactive webgraphics are a huge trend that many clients will be asking for. It delivers a truly personalized design that attracts traffic to their website and allows people to remember what they actually saw and read. As a result, modern web design in 2015 must include webgraphics.
Watch for These Developments
These are the main web design trends for 2015. Some of them will really change the face of the internet and how web designers perform their jobs. It is very important to remain current with this type of information, so that you don’t get stuck in a rut or get complacent. Keep your eye on these developments and start to think about how you can incorporate them into your own web design work.