With more and more websites launching online everyday, brands are constantly having to evolve their site to stay fresh and relevant.
Currently, companies are dealing with dual concerns with their sites.
A website needs to be eye-catching and engaging, but those elements can’t prevent the website from loading quickly or effectively communicating with the user.
The website must be unique enough to be interesting, but familiar enough so that’s it’s not confusing.
Keeping all of that in mind, many designers are following these six trends for website design in 2016.
1. Split Screens
One of the newest layouts in web design is the split screen. The page is typically flat, which means all the information is on one page that scrolls. That page is then split vertically in the middle with different information on each side.
This works well for retailers and restaurants who may want to include brand information on one side, and then product or menu items on the other side. Typically, split screens are contrasting in colors or shades to help distinguish the two screens. A split screen design is a very useful way to utilize space on your website.
2. Single Screen
Although split screens are becoming increasingly popular, single screens are not going anywhere. Sometimes, companies will use a single screen with a big background photo at the top of the screen. This effect attempts to draw in the consumer.
These websites are typically distraction free and resemble a page of a magazine that demands the viewer’s full attention. The viewer then scrolls or clicks on a button to enter the full website.
3. Long Scroll
Marketers and designers have thrown away the concept that the important information must be above the fold. It’s nearly impossible to decide where the fold should be because mobile devices and computers all have difference screen sizes.
Also, people are used to scrolling because many access websites from their phone or tablet. The scrolling website is typically broken into sections, which gives the familiar feeling of a traditional website. Not only do these layouts help drive the user through different sections, but it increases their time spent on-site.
Whether it’s motion animations with something simple such as a design or logo, or a background animation, animations are a popular attribute for the newest website design. These animations may be used to help with interaction on the website, or they may just be a page loading animation.
Some animations may be larger such as a pop up, or they may be an animation such as a subtle animation on the background of the website. Many times, the key is to encourage interaction inviting the user to stay and enjoy the website and brand longer.
5. Hidden Navigation
Since many people are accessing websites from their mobile devices, designers are trying to find ways to conserve space on the main page. The answer and major trend for new websites is to hide the navigation instead of employing a navigation bar.
Since most people are familiar with website layouts, they will click on a small animation or menu button because they know from experience that there will be a menu bar that is hidden when it’s not needed.
6. Responsive Designs
Prior to responsive designs, many people turned to mobile websites to make their sites relevant on different devices. Most companies are moving away from mobile websites to encourage consistency in their website design. Although a responsive design is not new, it is the most popular choice going forward for most companies.
Responsive designs keep up the brand identity and is easily recognizable since the website responds to the size of the screen instead of existing at a completely different domain. Responsive designs are also easy to market because there is little worry about the device a potential client may be using.
Websites have become the storefronts for many businesses, and marketers are smartly realizing that innovation with their websites is as important as every other aspect of the business. It is important for businesses to make sure that they don't lose their branding; however, it's also important that the website doesn't feel dated.
These new trends are sure to be popping up all over your screens in the near future as businesses work to attract new customers and maintain their current clientele.