The beginning of 2015 was a good year for web design innovations, what with the advance of HTML5 APIs along with features such as flat design, background videos and grid layouts. At the moment, 2015 isn't shaping up to be a game-changing year, with the focus more on the expansion of design ideas that bring the desktop and mobile user experiences closer and closer together. While some web design companies are still hopeful of something extra special happening, here's a more pragmatic approach with five trends which you can definitely expect to continue during the rest of 2015.
This trend has already begun and is only going to increase in popularity over the course of 2015. Featuring minimal navigation, users are immediately met with a full screen image (book cover) or video (cinematic), which is intended to maximise the impact on users when they first alight on the website. This kind of homepage suits both mobiles and desktops and is easier to code, so there are pragmatic reasons for the trend continuing on top of the visual impact.
Continuing the need for content to fit across a variety of different platforms, card-based design will increase over the rest of 2015 due its versatility to suit all media. It is immediately attention-grabbing, offering quick glimpses of the variety of content available, which will suit the new generation of users who just don't have the time (read: attention span) to sift through more detailed content.
Digital branding is something of a no-brainer considering the trends of device usage. More and more people are accessing the Internet primarily via their phones and tablets which mean websites will be catering more and more for that demographic. While many websites are converting their sites to become more mobile-friendly, expect to see more and more new sites concerned with that target audience from the off. Responsive design will also continue to evolve over the following months, though don't expect web and native to become uniformly the same until after 2015 has long gone.
As mobiles continue to become many people's primary Internet viewing device, watch as more and more sites choose to extend the length of their pages to better suit the phone format. Scrolling down and down is simply easier to view than linked content. This trend isn't just about homepages either, as you will see it extend to About and other information pages and even product pages on retail websites.
The general trend of 2015 is minimalist design, especially for homepages, and this will manifest in more hidden menus and hamburger icons. Many sites will utilise a slide-out menu style, while others will feature a modest icon (the hamburger) which will require clicking to reveal the menus. Another minimalist feature you'll be seeing more and more of is the ghost button. They are transparent, though usually recognisably shaped, and designed to allow users to advance to additional content without distracting from the impact of the initial homepage design.
Of course, there are plenty of other predictions regarding what to expect in web trends for the remainder of 2015, but the truth is that we are unlikely to see any huge innovations for the rest of this year. You never know, but at the moment the trend appears to be leaning more favourably towards mobile optimization.
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