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New Year - New Trends
Added on Monday 6th January 2014 at 17:10pm
Well the excitement of another Christmas filled with overeating and disappointing gifts has come and gone and as the days begin to get longer the dawning of new trends in web development slowly draw closer.
If you have an interest in web development, you've probably had your fill of predictions, but here's our take on the standout trends for 2014.
Even Larger Fonts.
Remember when everything went web 2.0? Millions of sites suddenly started rendering MASSIVE text. It wasn't a bad thing - in fact it looked great! This year I think we'll be going even bigger though. Savvy calls to action - getting your visitors to the content you want them to see will dictate larger importance and better screen resolutions and greater screen sizes of desktops and other devices, along with responsive design (see below) will be a great platform for this large text.
Remember when all we had was Times New Roman, Arial and Georgia? Unless you relied on heavy graphics or worse still, Flash, then your choice of font was pretty soul destroying. Thankfully, there's a plethora of brilliant type foundries providing web fonts, and Google Webfonts have a great free resource too. Say goodbye to boring typography.
Google, Apple, Microsoft... have you noticed the not so subtle shift from skeuomorphic based designs to flatter simple concepts? Since the recent iOS7 update especially, flat design has really been in the news. And as with most things Apple, this trend will no doubt continue to be followed throughout the rest of 2014 (even though strictly speaking, Microsoft paved the way on this one).
Continuous Scrolling and One Page Websites.
You may have seen this on Facebook, or news sites such as ITV. As you scroll down the page you are automatically taken to the next story without clicking. On some sites, as you continuously scroll, the layout of the site changes too, along with subtle animations. I'll go into the further shortly, but 2014 could be the year that we kill the above the fold ideology. Incidentally we launched a site for Machan Consulting a year or so ago now that adopted these principles, mainly because the nature of Ian's work called for a simple, iconographic layout. So whilst the concept isn't new, expect agencies to really push the boundaries with it this year.
Responsive Mobile Design.
This isn't new of course - mobile has been effecting all web design for probably the last 4 years. Our analytics show that mobile now makes up nearly 55% of the total traffic across the majority of our sites (even higher for retail sites). This trend has been going up for years and will of course continue throughout 2014. Previously mobile-specific websites were created as an add on or a separate site - with repeated content, but websites have the ability to be more responsive or adaptive and adjust accordingly to the device and screen orientation. No longer do you have to maintain two completely different sites and can instead focus on just one that responds appropriately or strips away surplus content that renders the experience better via such devices.
If you're not familiar, Parallax Scrolling presents the webpage as multiple layers. The layers scroll at different speeds creating fantastic, animated experiences and dynamic effects. The best I've seen has to be http://everylastdrop.co.uk/ and I hope to see more sites like this in 2014.
A 2014 Redesign?
Hopefully some of these trends may whet your appetite for a website refresh. If your site is looking a tad old, you've lost that loving feeling for it or you're not getting the returns you should be, then please do get in touch!