Effective Website Design Techniques for Improved User Experience
The wide world of the web is full of intriguing artistry, as well as a few (or, let’s face it, many) design fails. Amidst the animated GIFs and broken images, several trends have surfaced to rise above the rest. Here are six of the best 2014 design trends. Find out why you should consider them for your next web design project.
1. Parallax Scrolling
Parallax deals in transitions and effects that are triggered as a user scrolls down the length of a website. The content is usually managed on a single page, such as a homepage. Clicking a link on a parallax design, however, will often open a brand-new page. The new page may feature another parallax design or a static content page.
Parallax is worth considering for its attractive and innovative technology. Powered by CSS3 or HTML5, this option is a clean-loading alternative to the bandwidth-heavy embedded animations most designers know and hate.
2. Interactive Animations
Speaking of animations, HTML5 has brought with it interactive simulation opportunities. While some are designed as novelties, others offer real ways to engage users — keeping them connected to the most relevant parts of your content. You can also achieve interactive animations with the latest CSS3 effects such as 3D assets.
Interactive animations are especially useful for supplemental items such as presentations or infographics; however, in some cases, the interactive animation is the thing: it’s the technology that powers the app or SaaS product, allowing users to play, listen, and even engineer (3D printing, anyone?).
3. One-Page Designs
Unlike parallax, one-page designs are the scheme of an entire website’s structure. It’s design that features either static or animated content, but one difference remains: all links point to content bookmarked within the same dynamic page.
One-page designs are especially relevant to businesses that need to share only basic information — like an app development company. Perhaps you only need a landing page or a pithy portfolio that links to items in an app store. You should consider a one-page design.
4. Responsive Designs
Responsive design can be applied to any of the above templates or features. The idea is that the content on the screen, no matter what it is, will adjust to fit the particular device on which the website or app is being viewed.
Simply put, responsive design is becoming more of a standard than a consideration. If you expect your target market to view your website via mobile and more, then you need a responsive design.
Developing Your Design
If you haven’t noticed by now, state-of-the-art design isn’t just a matter of graphics. It deals with development too. HTML5, CSS3, and even Java are key components of the latest design trends. Ultimately, it’s programming that “powers the pretty.”