10 New Year’s Resolutions For Wannabe Web Designers In 2017
Featured Image: iStock/Cn0ra
The New Year is a chance to grow, accept change and explore exciting new possibilities. It is also a time when we make a silent vow to ourselves to “be bigger, smarter and better”.
As a budding web designer, have you made your new year’s resolutions yet? If not, read on to learn what you should be doing in 2017 to stay ahead of the curve.
Here are 10 New Year’s Resolutions every web designer needs to make:
1. I Will… Do Away With Flat Design
You may or may not have noticed how many sites on the web today are starting to look pretty much the same. Where’s all the unique design and personality creativity we used to see?
Strip everything away and you’re left with the bare essentials – a design aesthetic every site wants to apply, much like Google’s Material.
What you really should do is reignite your creative spark and strive to create something unique and memorable. Ditch flat design and go for more unique and imaginative designs instead.
2. I Will… Draw More Attention With Gifs And Animations
Animations are, of course, a superb way of demonstrating how stuff works or giving away useful content to audiences. GIFs today are more sophisticated than ever and you’ll also see animations incorporating CSS and SVG to boast pretty amazing design elements, to say the least.
In 2017, you can definitely expect more content types to be shared and what better way than to use animation to communicate things far quicker and more conveniently than just video or text? Do it right and you can make your website super lightweight without having to use multiple images or bandwidth-heavy video.
According to an Econsultancy survey, 40% of people will abandon a web page if it takes more than three seconds to load.
3. I Will… Focus On Hand-Drawn Elements
More websites today are incorporating hand-drawn elements, which can range from icons, fonts and graphics to buttons and other unique elements that bring a creative spark to the website.
Even though websites haven’t quite been a hub for hand-drawn elements, the introduction and widespread acceptance of such elements have brought about a nice change of pace compared to standard everyday design elements.
Remember when we talked about moving away from the “one size fits all” flat design to come up with something unique? This is one of the ways of doing it.
4. I Will… Integrate Microinteractions
Micro-interactions are powerful yet subtle ways a user can interact with a site. You’ll typically find them in click animations, hovers, scrolling effects etc. These design elements aren’t exactly unheard of, but designers are now spending a great deal of time refining them and finding ways to make them more informative.
The most commonly used integration is probably the rollover or hover, where a user simply moves the cursor over sections of the site to see the microinteractions coming to life and interact with those elements as they go. This is a great way to save time and energy for your web users and you too should be incorporating this in your 2017 web design resolutions!
5. I Will… Make My Website Highly Responsive
The term responsive web design often props up in web design and tech circles. With the average user browsing the internet from their handheld device, you would have no doubt noticed how websites are quick to adopt a responsive design that automatically adapts to every device’s screen size.
What’s more, Google even ranks mobile-friendly, SEO-optimized and responsive websites higher in SERPs. In fact, Google has prioritized responsive website in its search engine results pages since April 2015. The bottom line is, it’s being implemented on a wider scale than before, and you need to get on the bandwagon now.
It’s interesting to know that 46% of people using mobile devices report having problems viewing a static or non-responsive site.
6. I Will… Rely Less On Stock Photos, More On Authentic Ones
A number of websites are gradually shifting away from using generic, stock images in favor of bespoke photos that truly highlight the company’s vision and culture.
Did you know 46% of marketers say custom photography will be part of their marketing strategy in 2016?
Photography truly is a sacred art form and it has been somewhat lost in translation over the years, partly due to an overabundance of stock photos. However, businesses are realizing the importance of standing out and promoting their brand with photos that are visually diverse and truly speak to audiences about the brand and people force that’s behind the business.
You too should captivate audiences with unique photos of the business and the driving force behind it.
7. I Will… Choose Bolder Colors
The year 2015 and 2016 saw heavy experimentation with web design colors, so don’t be surprised if you see your fellow web designers embracing this trend in the year ahead.
Brands have been embracing statement color layouts, while using bright and vibrant cues, accent colors and gradients to not only make their business brand stand out but also inject a generous amount of soul and personality into the company name.
Don’t be afraid to speak out to your audiences by painting the brand in bold and eye-catching colors.
8. I Will… Not Hesitate To Experiment With Flashier Typography
“Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them as an artist.”
Picasso said that. Big and prominent typographies have been around for a while now and designers are not at all hesitating to show off their creativity by venturing into the unknown.
Applying into context what Picasso said, generously investigate your topic before experimenting with flashy-looking typography. Once you have gained enough knowledge, try out different colors, arrange the spacing as needed and mix up different fonts with your images.
Brands are set to go bigger and more eye-catching than ever. Don’t be surprised to see highly dynamic colors and rich textures coupled with bold and edgy fonts to leave audiences mesmerized. No reason why you should get left behind.
9. I Will… Give “Material Design” A Chance
Google’s Material Design officially went mainstream in 2015. What exactly does it entail?
MD is a way of giving more importance to a page, drawing the visitor’s attention to specific areas, while constantly moving as well as responding to his/her actions. The latter is referred to as Material Motion.
Geometrical shapes are used to visually enhance a website, create more depth and realism. Today, it’s become quite popular all across the web, largely to its “living” properties and flexibility, not to mention its compatibility across any device that can be used to browse the web.
Depending on what the business does, Material Design may or may not be ideal for you, but it’s definitely worth a shot.
10. I Will… Make The Shift To More Creative Heading Styles
We’re now starting to witness more websites gradually moving away from basic heading styles such as all caps, san serif, centered heading etc. and moving toward more creative and imaginative headings.
Don’t be afraid to change up the layout and justification of your headings, while adding distinct elements or sometimes, even skipping headings above the fold, if appropriate. Designers are experimenting generously and 2017 is going to be a year full of uniqueness and diversity. Well, you have your work all cut out, in that case.
Ditch the typical heading styles and experiment away.
The New Year is going to give birth to some exciting web design concepts – pay heed to the above and you too can be among those web design greats.