In the not-so-distant past, many believed web design was all about simply how a website appeared on-screen and nothing more. However, with Google’s pursuit of optimal user experiences for those who use its search engine, it quickly becomes clear that appearance alone will do little to help a website’s rankings and subsequent performance.
The term ‘user experience’ (UX) is now very much at the forefront of every web designer’s mind when they are designing websites. Whilst many might say that is purely to keep Google happy, the reality is that good web design that creates websites that visitors will like and enjoy will in turn, show Google that a website deserves a higher ranking anyway.
Besides, suppose a website design is catering for its users. In that case, it should follow that those users will stay on the website longer, follow the calls to action that exist there, and are far more likely to return to that website and recommend it to others.
Getting a website to a point where users are provided with an enhanced experience relies greatly on the website’s design. Several web design techniques can help website designers achieve this objective, and here are ten of them that most of today’s web designers will consider using.
People of all ages, even those considered young, love nostalgia, and this fact is being used increasingly by today’s web designers. One example of this is some websites being given aesthetics that remind users of ‘Y2K’ and in truth, this is occurring in many industries, not just web design where there is a resurgence of styles mirroring the early noughties.
On the same theme, some websites now have fonts that have not been seen for ten or more years. The reason is not that web designers have no modern fonts to use, but rather that users have a desire to see fonts they remember fondly.
Suppose we bear in mind that one key to good web design is enhancing the user’s experience. In that case, it should not be too difficult to appreciate why animation is an important element on many websites. In particular animated reveals, including reveals of products, are a great way to engage with users.
Perhaps it is the suspense of waiting for the reveal, the fun of seeing animation on screen, or simply that it differs from the norm, which is the appeal, but whichever it is, we highly recommend you consider animated reveals for your website.
Parallax Zoom Scrolling
The basis of parallax zoom scrolling is that it is an animation effect whereby the front element on the screen moves faster when the user is scrolling down or up on their display than the elements that are in the background.
The effect is to create depth within the display as the users view it, to the extent that the effect created is akin to 3D. Also, many users say it provides an enjoyable anticipatory feeling as they wonder what will come into view next as they scroll.
‘Just For Fun’ Elements
People love to be entertained or stimulated, and this is why some web designers are including random and often meaningless fun elements within their website creations, as the feedback is users love them. Examples include fun animations, random funny phrases, or even the option to play an interactive game whilst visiting the website.
Custom Fonts & Typefaces
There is no denying that there is a plethora of fonts and typefaces available for use by web designers. However, online users love to see originality, so one of the increasingly popular web design techniques is using one or more custom fonts. These can be created either by individuals skilled in digital graphics, or software can be used to create them, such as Calligraphr or BitFontMaker.
The term ‘build your own’ can be seen in many business scenarios, where consumers combine their purchases using a series of choices and selections. With web design in 2023, this principle is used to create features within websites that allow users to custom-build their mock-ups of products, including clothing, jewellery, and lounge furniture, to name just three.
Psychologists will tell you that whenever you make something personalised for someone, they are more engaged in the activity. That is one core reason why the inclusion of personalised content and experiences in websites has become a common technique used by web designers. Some examples include playlists on music websites or suggestions being offered to the user based on their other activity on the website.
Now and again, a web design technique appears out of nowhere and suddenly becomes popular despite logic telling us that it should not be the case. A prime example is overlapping text which means seeing text overlap with other elements within the page’s design, such as images. Although it probably breaks most design rules, rather than users thinking it looks untidy, it is popular and thus used increasingly by web designers.
Notifications on a website is a web design technique that is taking its prompt from how notifications are used by businesses on mobile devices. Note we are not talking about the hated pop-ups but instead using notifications to provide useful information and help for visitors to a website.
Using notifications and adding a degree of interactivity to them means that users do not see them as an interruption but instead, something which can be informative, useful, and even entertaining, which they feel they are in control of.
Premium Content Options
Websites have always been used for monetisation purposes, but in 2023 the means of monetisation being part of how a website is designed has come to the fore. Specifically, we are talking about allowing website users to experience enhanced or premium content whilst they are on the website. Gated content that can be accessed via a payment, either as a one-off or regularly similar to a membership site, is being embraced by web designers and their clients.