The web is an dynamic, organic being. It evolves as people do, responding to trends in blogging and design by constantly raising the bar. With millions of bloggers out there, we see constant evolutions of the next design trend.
Here are some of my favorite recent trends in web design. Although the examples listed here may not be the orginator of the trend, they are the first to catch my eye.
The design trend associated with Web 2.0 is actually multiple trends rolled into one.
- Round corners
- Glossy/Shiny graphics
- Big, prominent graphics
- Larger, non-serif typography
I’ve often said, a designer who can pull off a simplistic design is just as talented as the one that can create a super-complex one. That is because a simple design is more than just leaving elements out. It is about balancing design, carefully choosing colors and typography, and expertly integration navigation and content to create an effective and smooth design.
Whole site branding integration
Orginally, web designs included a header, with a logo and a content section, with the content. Recently, designers are pushing the limits by incorporating colors, logos, branding, messaging and graphics throughout the entire site, not just the header.
Web designers are putting much more thought into typography. There are many resources popping up to pick a typography set. Once upon a time, designs included an h1, h2, and p style. Now some designs include dozens of different font stylings.
Single page design
Along with designing simpler sites, designers are exploring ways to keep content on one page. In portfolios, showcases or simple informational sites, developers are looking for ways to put all content on page one so the readers sees it all without having to click through anywhere. The example below you will recognized as Twitter. As arguably one of the top 5 sites on the web, everything you need to know about Twitter is located on the front page.
Advances in compression technology, increased internet access speeds have allowed designers to grow the size and quality of images they use in new designs. This makes for an appealing and graphically pleasing design.
Perspective and depth
Strategically using dropshadows, angles and overlaps, designers have added a 3rd dimension to web design that was previously limited to 2 dimensions. Using these techniques, designers are able to draw user attention to specific areas consistent with the goals of the site. Perhaps conversion forms, twitter buttons or featured content.
Designers are adding overarching themes like grunge, retro, whimsical, etc. These themes tie together all elements of a design and give the user a feeling of continuity, adding to the overall experience.
Designers have realized that themes should be designed for a specific purpose such as magazine, portfolio, green, blogging, etc. Designing for a purpose allows the designer and webmaster to focus on function and not generalize the design so it can be used across multiple different sites.