So you’ve decided that you or your business need a website. That’s a great idea! Let’s imagine you won’t go to a web design studio for a custom design, but will search for a suitable website template on the web. And maybe the first question you will have – How should it look? What integral parts should it have to make your future website look up-to-date? There are millions of themes on the net, but what criteria you have to know to make a successful pick?
Actually, there are lots of issues you’d better know about website templates. But let’s pitch upon those elements which are visible for an average user’s eye. We are going to review the latest web design trends in 2016 which a non-tech guy can notice and make a right choice.
It will be the first thing visitors see when they reach out your site. It’s like a show-window for a store. There should be a high-resolution and full-width image. Guests have to feel like they want to see more. See what is behind the curtain.
Asymmetric cards structure
It is one of the examples of the content structured for better user engagement. All the cards have to be clickable and refer to a single topic. Some templates could have grid-like cards and it is also great, but the asymmetric layout rules now. That’s the way some popular social media networks and online marketplaces present photos and product cards.
The flat design is next to the material one. Poor skeuomorphic design… The motto of the flat design is “Keep it simple”. As for the material one, it calls for an intuition. But essentially, they both are all in the same boat. And if you are not a web designer, the only thing you will see is that modern themes are minimalistic and are not overloaded with graphics. It helps a content go to the first place. Users click right buttons intuitively and feel like floating around the site.
I know it is a long and difficult telling nothing to somebody who is not deep into the web design. In plain language, it means that a website gives you feedbacks on your actions. For example, you add some item to your shopping card by clicking an icon. When the action is done, this icon whether will change its color, or you will see a message that the product has been added. Also, miscrointeractions help users manipulate something. Users don’t receive detailed instructions with the dozen of words. They get a slight hint.
Why will the animation never go out of fashion? The answer is simple. Because we can’t change the way our perceptive organs work. Our eyes respond to any motion. But be careful and don’t overdose on it at your website. Choose templates with a hover effect (icons move/change colors when you pass the mouse), background videos, the Parallax scrolling effect etc.
Rich colors + Powerful typography
2015 was sponsored by bright colors, but 2016 made it a must-have. Search for the duotone website themes. It can be used in overlays for photos to make them look more up-to-date. It can be two contrasting colors or the shades of only one color.
As for a typography, here you can make use of Google fonts. The most of the current templates come with these fonts, so you won’t need to download and install them. There are two main pieces of advice you should follow. The first one is that your font should be easy-to-read and it is a prime goal. And the second one is that the chosen font should help your brand identity.
Long scrolling, no seams
Sometimes a long scrolling feature is the same as a one-page design. But it works only for websites with a few pages. In this case, a user should only scroll down a front page to see all the pages. In general, the long scrolling practice makes a storytelling perfect that is quite popular today. Mobile gadgets’ users benefit from it the most since it smoothens the navigation process and makes it seamless.
Look for fullscreen forms in a theme you think will fit your project. It will improve the overall user experience. Fullscreen contact forms are perfect for mobile gadgets and will facilitate the typesetting.
I’ve told about current trends in web design particularly. But you shouldn’t forget about the backend part of your theme. Try to pick a CMS (content management system) that will make your life easier, but won’t turn it to a nightmare. The type of CMS depends on a project you are going to launch. If you want to sell something online, go for WooCommerce, Shopify, Prestashop, Magento etc. If you are going to showcase a business and services, WordPress, Joomla and Drupal will help you make it efficiently.