With around 15 million internet subscribers, according to Statista, Australia has one of the highest internet penetration percentages (88%) in the world.
Now, add to this fact that some 74% of these online customers feel frustrated when they are met with outdated websites that lack personalization or fail to keep up with modern web design trends of any kind.
Still, who can blame web owners when new trends keep popping up every other day? One would almost have to gaze into a crystal ball to adequately prepare for the following year.
Better yet, you can take a look at these awesome web design trends and predictions for this year to get ready ahead of schedule. If you want to find exactly what these are, just keep on scrolling.
1. Increasingly Adaptive Designs
In the past, your desktop computer was your main connection to the Internet; today, not so much. In fact, according to Statista, mobile phone web traffic had already surpassed desktop traffic back in 2017, and the gap slowly widens.
Heck, even Google started ranking websites according to their mobile-friendliness — in other words, mobile-first indexing.
As a result, a mobile-friendly design is no longer a neat (bonus) feature, it has become a necessity. Failing to keep up with this trend means losing more than half of your audience from the very start — hence why there won’t be a place on the Internet that doesn’t cater to this particular audience.
What’s more, this mobile-first mentality will probably overshadow responsiveness to a degree, as websites will be tailored specifically for mobile usage (and not the other way around like today).
Meaning, that web designers will think twice before including any overly complex graphics, asymmetrical designs, and pretty much everything that can hinder faster loading speeds.
2. The Advent of the Voice User Interface (VUI)
Voice search optimization trends are sizzling hot at the moment! So, why not go the extra mile? Implementing some kind of voice user interface is the next logical step. Just think about it — your very own personal AI assistant to guide you through the contents of a website.
Whether this will be Siri, Alexa, Google’s Assistant, or something entirely different (and new) we can’t say for certain; thus far these three have reigned supreme in the AI assistant game.
Currently, all the best tech companies are investing millions of dollars in developing and upgrading their AI assistants to the next level. Some examples of this technology could include voice ID logins and facial recognition, conversational — rather than text-based — information for the user, more interaction and engagement from the website, etc.
Overall, it’s safe to say that VUI will play a huge role in the years to come.
3. Increased Focus on the User
Naturally, the most important part of any website is the user — without them, there can be no website. It’s no wonder then that websites that offer unprecedented user experience (UX for short) are trending so much at the moment. Seeing how there is an overly customer-centric mentality in Australia (and the world) at the moment, user focus will become even more prevalent.
The key to unraveling the ultimate user experience is to look at your website primarily from your users’ point of view. This, of course, requires immense experience with web and UX design in general, as well as a pinch of creativity.
If you don’t have the necessary expertise, consider consulting with experts. Finding an exceptional web design agency in Sydney, Melbourne, and all the other major cities (and beyond) shouldn’t be a problem.
4. Minimalism on the Rise
Gone are the days of over-the-top website designs with cluttered images, text frames, and God knows what else. Instead, this abysmal ‘90s design is being replaced with a new, modern feel that’s easy on the eyes and actually pleasant to look at.
The majority of today’s websites use limited color pallets and are smart about their white space use to remove any needless distractions that can take the user’s focus away from the actual content.
Hidden navigation bars; and fewer buttons popping around all over the place; are but a few clear indicators that the website in question is opting for a slick, smooth design over flashy content.
Now, the reason for this minimalistic approach is not purely for the sake of cosmetics; it’s about performance and website responsiveness too. The average person has an attention span of around 8 seconds.
Seeing how the content itself is becoming easier to read (no more walls of text), it’s only natural that the design accompanying it will do the same. Again, a more responsive design means faster loading speeds and better ranking in search engines; everything a popular website should strive for.
5. Implementation of Augmented Reality (AR)
If you ever played Pokémon Go, chances are you know what Augmented Reality (AR) is all about. For those who haven’t — AR is an engaging blend of a real-world environment with virtual objects and other visual and auditory stimuli.
Why is this technology relevant for websites, you wonder? Simple, just imagine an online eCommerce store where you can stare into a virtual mirror of sorts to check exactly how that coat in your shopping cart looks on you; neat, huh?
The online retail and fashion industries will surely find this technology as a breath of fresh air, and an instant online sensation. Hyping aside though, AR and VR technologies could be of immense benefit to online shoppers, ultimately paving the way for the already popular eCommerce for years to come.
6. Chatbot Sophistication
Last but not least, we have the rise of machines (to the role of conversationalists). This innovative web-design trend has already been immensely popular in the online community and according to some estimates, by 2020, about 85% of customer interactions on websites will be handled without a human representative.
Why is this so? Well, again, it’s all about the speed; beginning to see a pattern here? Users are extremely impatient and they want answers to their inquiries and they want them right NOW! Chatbots do just that.
They can answer most customer questions, direct them to the right content, and collect feedback for future use. What’s more, they can even remember a specific user’s preferences providing an awesome boost to site personalization.
Plus, let’s be honest here, they also help lower the budget for companies as they can replace whole cohorts of human agents slaving behind the scenes.
At the end of the day, these are all just mere predictions. What the future holds for web design, only time will tell.