1. Increased use of current User Interface Patterns.
It can hardly be called a prediction. It is however foreseen that the current trend in user interfaces (UI), due to its increased popularity in the user experience (UX) will continue to be used in more websites. These patterns include the now well-known Hamburger Menu, continuous scrolling (single page websites), card layouts made famous by Pinterest and the Full Page Image design.
In order to complement and enhance the storytelling style of websites of late we will see an increased use of rich animations. These animations will include loading animations, hover animations, animated galleries and slideshows and smooth scrolling.
3. Material Design as an alternative to Flat Design.
Although Flat Design is still growing, there is a definitive move in the direction of Material Design. As we know Flat design is a style of interface design without any stylistic elements that gives the illusion of three dimensions and is focused on a minimalist use of simple elements, typography and flat colours. Material Design does not intend to do away with flat design. It builds on the flat design by adding subtle shadow effects as well as the concepts of movement and depth to create more realistic appearing designs.
4. CSS3 to finally show its muscle.
CSS3 has been around for some years now but has not been used to its full potential, as internet browsers have started to catch up with its support to CSS3. So some of the fancy CSS3 layout modules such as CSS3 Flexbox can now be handled by the latest releases of all the popular browsers. Flexbox will not revolutionise the aesthetics of layout but will offer an easier solution with less code which in turn will allow for faster-rendering pages.
5. More illustrations, fewer photos.
The idea of picture perfect models on a website has for some time been criticised for its canned appearance. Visitors to a website appear to connect more readily with an illustration as they are allowed to form their own interpretation of the scene or idea. Whereas we foresee that full page images will grow in its popularity, especially on front pages, we will see fewer of them on other pages. Illustrations also allows for a far better explanation than photos and a far more interesting way than large volumes of text.
6. Bolder typography and colours.
Both colour and typography is very useful as a branding and marketing device. As more companies realise that it can be put to extremely good use to reinforce values and convey important messages designers will be allowed to use it to its fullest potential. With the ever growing number of web fonts the designers will be at the ready to expand and refine their designs. With a number of designers and brands becoming bolder with the use of colours it can be expected that 2016 will be marked by a lot of colour.
Some have argued that the parallax effect (also referred to as the parallax syndrome by haters) will not last very long and will be outdated by the end of 2015. We however believe that if put to good use and to add to the UX parallax still have a place and can even continue to grow. With computers and related technology getting better at handling parallax and similar effects we will see a growth in these unique scrolling animations.
8. Responsive website design.
With the ever growing number of different sized devices to access, the internet responsive website layouts will continue to grow. With companies realising that their websites are being rewarded by Search Engines if websites are responsive fewer unresponsive websites will be found on the web and will hopefully die out soon. From a designer and developer’s point of view 2016 is the year during which Bootstrap4 and Foundation 6’s releases are eagerly awaited. These frontend frameworks are the most commonly used tools in the responsive website industry.
9. Custom explainer videos.
Big and small companies alike have taken to the trend of custom explainer videos. The purpose of an explainer video is to demonstrate how a product or service works. Visitors may skim a list of features and still have no idea how the product operates. Videos clarify everything visually and cover the important stuff in just a few minutes.
10. Lazy loading.
On websites that feed content continuously, Lazy Loading aids in viewing immediate website content without having to wait for the whole page to load. This is a very useful approach to websites that are highly visually based. In a society where information is constantly being fed into our lives, lazy loading helps to simplify viewing of said content by loading only small chunks of web content at a time. Lazy loading is put to good use by big names such as Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest. Photographers will find this a useful addition to their websites.
Please let me know if you have a different view or any comment to share.
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