At the start of any year it’s always nice to have a think about current trends, and what we expect to see for the coming 12 months in our industry. So, here are our design based musings for the coming year.
The first impression made by the visitor to a site is the top section of any home page. Here at yoyo, we think the next step for companies beyond lifestyle brands could be bolder, high quality human centred photography used proudly on the main page of the site. General consensus on the web seems to be the assumption of more prolific use of large attention grabbing heros across a broader spectrum of websites, not necessarily product based companies.
A popular effect used in the past year or so where 'snapping of scrolling' is used to place the user onto the next section of content, these little additions to sites help to elevate the ‘finish’ of a site. We have already seen this particular approach used by trendsetters such as Apple on their main product pages, it seems to be moving to retail sites such as HMV – a company we wrote about a short while ago here. As with any effect, such as scroll-to or parallax, it should be used to the benefit of the user, it shouldn’t be used where usability may be affected. It’ll be interesting to see who uses these little tricks to benefit the user experience effectively over the coming year.
Alongside the strong bold use of photography, there is a theory flying around the interweb that 2014 may finally be the year where ‘video’ really is considered as an effective tool in web design. Of course the use of video has been around for ages on the web, but the unwieldy-ness of file sizes and loading speeds have likely put many people off from adopting the format wholeheartedly with regard to website design. However, we are now at a point where broadband speeds and mobile networks are at a level where those sorts of concerns are beginning to melt away.
'2014 may finally be the year where ‘video’ really is considered as an effective tool in web design'
Alongside the development of faster network speeds, in the past couple of years, the introduction of short ‘clip based’ sharing sites have emerged, such as Twitter’s ‘vine’; other social media sites have introduced video support too, such as Instagram, and Flickr. Sitting alongside the dedicated social media sites, standalone apps have emerged, such as ‘IDEO’s Spark for iOS’ allowing the creation of short 50 second or so clips, small enough to share with friends or upload to social networks. Web design will likely follow this curve of ‘lightweight’ video usage, selling products and services in a much more effective way than using simple images or large sections of text.
Again, the big-dogs Apple have set their trend with iOS 7, with a vast number of designers and developers required to redesign existing apps to follow the new flat design language, corresponding browser sites are likely to follow suit. It could be to the detriment of the development of ‘visual communication’ as many clients and companies could ‘jump on the bandwagon’ so to speak, but it looks like it’s here to stay for the short term future at least!
So here is to 2014, no doubt it’ll be a good one, hopefully this short little blog will give something to look forward to, to shake your January blues!
This blog post was originally written by myself for Yoyo Design, the original content can be found here.