How is your company website doing? Is it getting the kind of traffic and generating the leads and conversions you hoped it would? What about its design? Is that up to trend?
Businesses can no longer make it in their industries without websites. It is much more likely that a new customer will hear about you online first, even if you have a physical location where they can visit and browse your merchandise. That being said, running a company website is about much more than advertising your products and services. It needs to look good, too. First impressions, even on the web, mean everything.
Here are eight web design trends you need to know about, so you can ensure your company website will offer potential customers everything they need, even down to the colors you choose.
1. Bright color schemes
More and more websites nowadays are using brighter, bolder color schemes to please the eyes of their target audiences. Strategic use of bright colors is a great way to draw in potential customers. Think of a black and white scheme versus a scheme made up of vibrant blues and greens. The latter gives off the impression that this is a virtual place worth hanging around awhile.
The same way you advertise your products and/or services with bright colors, add this simple element to your web design and marvel at the results.
2. Long scrolling
You’ve seen this design before: instead of a page ending when you scroll to the bottom, new content just keeps loading as you keep scrolling. Long scrolling encourages users to stay on your website longer and exposes users to more of your content. As long as you use it effectively to enhance a visitor’s experience, it has the potential to positively impact the visual attractiveness of your content, and it is also extremely mobile-friendly.
As long as you have quality content and a lot of value to offer your visitors, you shouldn’t have to worry about its SEO drawback (which is still something you can work around).
3. Enabling social comments
If you have ever worried about the lack of activity in your website’s comments sections, it isn’t necessarily the quality of your content you need to worry about. People are much more likely to comment on an article or page using a social media account, such as Facebook, than they are to comment within the site itself.
There are plugins for WordPress, for example, that allow you to easily enable social commenting in order to increase engagement with your audience within your site.
4. Material design
Material design is a concept that focuses on layers, flat interfaces and plenty of whitespace. These days, it is essential that your website is mobile-friendly, which is what Material design focuses on. It enhances user experience by making touch screen navigation more fluid. Ideally, a user should be able to get to where they want to be in as few clicks (or finger taps) as possible.
This design has become more and more popular in the last few years, and is something you should seriously consider applying to your own website design as your business begins to grow.
5. Card layouts
If you have ever visited Pinterest, you know what this looks like. Different pieces of content are separated on a page in modules that look like cards laid out on a table. It makes it easier for both desktop and mobile users to single out content they want to click on and get to their desired page more quickly.
Implementing a card-style interface as part of your company’s website design makes it more navigable and inviting to users who are drawn to your content through photos and short descriptions or titles.
6. The hamburger menu
The hamburger menu is not a new design, but in recent years has become popular among websites using visuals to draw in their audiences. Instead of running a navigation bar near the top or on the side of a page to display a menu, the hamburger icon “hides” its navigation menu until you click on the three-line symbol representing a list (it also sort of looks like a hamburger).
Check out how these website designs used the hamburger menu to create a simple, eye-catching layout for their aesthetic home pages.
7. More photos and icons, fewer words
When the internet as we know it today first began its rapid growth, text ruled the game. Now, web designers are constantly developing new icons and modules to make navigating the web more of a visual experience. Why read a button with a title when you can much more easily click on an icon that takes you exactly where you want to go?
Think of the social icons you see now at the top of most websites. Just by turning a string of logos into clickable icons, users know that if they want to follow your company on Twitter, all they need to do is click on the Twitter logo to get to your company’s profile.
8. Fewer ads, more content
Web design is slowly moving away from banner-type ads, sidebar ads and popup ads and is starting to incorporate more of its ads into the web content itself. This includes sponsored content such as branded product reviews as well as more modern article layouts that provide modules to drop ads alongside text instead of keeping them hidden in banners and sidebars.
Ads are still an essential part of monetization when it comes to your company website, but there are more strategic and aesthetically pleasing ways to implement it successfully than ever before.
The performance and success of your company website is as dependent on updated design techniques as it is on the quality of the things you are offering to your customers. You probably don’t realize it, but you judge a website by its design within seconds of landing on one of its pages.
Don’t hesitate to browse some of the websites run by companies you admire. See what they are doing and decide what will, and what won’t, work for your own business’s web pages.