A look back on what made the web world turn
The new year will be here soon, and website developers are already looking at next year’s trends. So without any ado, let’s take a look back at the 2013 website design trends.
Responsive Website Design
Responsive website design is by far the top website design trend for 2013. With ways to view websites increasing daily, mobile apps have taken a back seat to pages that conform to any size screen. Responsive website design has many benefits. First, it makes websites more user-friendly as a whole. The more user-friendly a website is, the more likely a viewer will become a buyer. Responsive website design also makes sharing websites on social media easier, which means more exposure for small businesses.
Converting to a responsive website is a no brainer. The process, however, is very complex. 2013 saw few website developers who fully understood how to make such a change. Not to worry though – with technology this new, it’s likely that more website developers will quickly learn the skills to keep up with the high demand.
Apple calls it Retina Display. Samsung calls it HD Super AMOLED. Both serve the same purpose – they make higher quality images easier for people to access. From a smart phone to a tablet to a laptop, viewers can now see high definition images at any time and at any place. Business owners are quickly replacing low-resolution photos on their websites with clear, crisp HD images. After all, no one wants to drive away tech-savvy consumers with pixilated images.
This trend is spreading slowly, but it’s still wise to get ahead of the curve. The key to HD display is to make any picture twice as clear. Most website developers in turn have started taking larger, regular quality images and shrinking them to half their size until more HD images are more readily available.
Infinite scrolling was fairly new to 2013 and came with many different pros and cons. Much like responsive website design, infinite scrolling makes websites easier to access on a smart phone or a tablet. It also avoids awkward breaks in content and loads much quicker than a multiple page format. Some well-known websites that have changed to an infinite scrolling layout include Pinterest and Reddit.
Infinite scrolling still leaves many questions yet to be answered. First, how does infinite scrolling effect SEO? Without a scroll bar, how does a viewer know how much content is on a page? Without a navigation bar on the bottom, how can viewers quickly return to the top of a page? Needless to say, you can expect more research to be done on infinite scrolling in 2014.
Simplistic Website Design
Website design began as a crazy world of short videos, 3-D graphics, and cheesy music. These busy website designs left viewers tired and overwhelmed. As a result, business owners had a high number of website visitors, but few actual customers. Website developers took note of this and started making websites simple to navigate and easy to read. Popular simplistic websites that are known for being very user friendly include Craigslist, Apple and IMDB.
A good simple, website design is harder to produce than you might think. If not done correctly, simplistic website designs can actually bore the reader. As websites begin to look more and more alike, website developers have begun to rely on typography and large background images to make their websites stand out.
Content Is King
The latest buzzword in website design is SEO, or Search Engine Optimization. SEO is achieved by writing content with key words so that a website appears at the top of any Google search. Now that search engines are more complex websites can no longer trick their way to the top of the list. SEO is still a key part of website development, but the strategy of website content has changed.
Business owners are now looking to both bring a viewer to their website and keep them there. After all, the longer a customer stays on a website, the more likely they will buy a product. This is called website conversion and good ol’ solid content seems to work best. Website developers are now teaming up with content writers to make sure websites not only receive the most amounts of views, but the most amount of conversions as well.
There you have it! A look back on the website design trends of 2013. Keep posted for the website design trends of 2014 later on this year. Questions? Comments? Write us a note in the comment box below!