5x 2018 Design Trends To Embrace For Your Website

by | Jan 26, 2018 | Design | 0 comments

Let’s be honest! Design trends in the sense we first think of come and go. That hipster font that was adorning posters back in the 60’s will go out of fashion once its everywhere again and then the crowds will flock to something new. Which, I’ll let you into a secret, doesn’t exist. Everything has been done before? Maybe, but if you try to keep up to the current trend and implement every cool thing you see, your branding is going to end up looking like some frankenstein monster or it’ll look like everyone else. Basically just take a leaf out of the big boys books when thinking about the 2018 design trends and keep it simple and clean. Fussiness will only confuse and make peoples heads hurt. Your branding and overall design feel should stay very much uniform. It takes time for customers and clients to absorb it and chopping everything around will only disenfranchise them.

2018 design trends – that aren’t really trends

So while I’m not about to tell you the latest hot font or colour palette (hmmm maybe I will kind of) to use in 2018, I do think there are some trends within the design industry that we should pay attention to.

1. Accessibility

With more and more people having broadband access and more and more innovation in the online disability industry, 2018 is already proving that accessibility is going to be a hot topic. Already this year we have passed the deadline for compliance with the updated Section 508 program. While this only really applies if you are dealing with Federal institutions in the US, there will be ramifications across the industry as new standards are being set.

There are an abundance of tools out there available for us to be able to assess accessibility for all kinds of disabilities. For example, the screenshots below allow us to view how our website looks for anomalous trichromats. It’s clear we really do have no excuses to not consider this a 2018 design trend. Helping these individuals be able to experience what the online world has to offer in a more comfortable fashion is a great thing.

A screenshot of how unity websites footer looks when unfiltered for colour impairment.
A screenshot of how unity websites footer looks when filtered for protanopia colour impairment.

2. Sticky Elements, Movement & Interactions

I’m not talking about the scrolling text of MySpace old or clicking a button only to spill your coffee all over your £100 keyboard because an unexpected audio decided to blare out. No-one should be penalised for owning a set of loud speakers…

Anyway, we’re talking sticky elements and hover over effects. Not banner adverts stuck all over the place, but live chat bubbles and micro interactions that give the user feedback that something could happen. Utilising these in your designs will make your pages feel more alive and less of a bore to browse.

Example of a sticky live chat bubble

3. Parallax

As I said earlier, everything has been done before so now is the time for refinement. You’re probably already well aware of or at least experienced parallax during your online endeavours. We know the text over image has been done a million times, but there is still loads of life left in the old horse yet. Use the parallax timings to allow images to linger on the page for longer while your text is scrolling past, or overlaying multiple pictures with different filter effects to create wicked hero sections. I know it’s nothing new for 2018, but when done well it can make images and text just that bit more exciting.

A gif to show an example of multi image paralax and text overlays.

4. Bold Colours & The Amazing Gradients

Here we are again, spot the trend forming here? Yes the colours of the 80’s and 90’s are back. Yippee! Bold, clashy colours and smooth gradients to lift that flat design out of the noughties. Salmon, I want lots of Salmon, and electric blue mind. It’s wonderful to be back in my era, but we should learn from our past ancestors mistakes that contrast between text must always be considered to keep everything legible.

5. Brutalism

Again, I know this is a trend we saw emerge in the recent past and there are many different interpretations, but I really want to see more of it and for it to be refined for a better user experience. For those that don’t know, this is about turning the tables on their head and creating a collage of basic elements and stripping it back to a simpler time. Digital artistry for the Nyan Cat generation. This can very easily go wrong and possibly put every visitor to your website off – I probably wouldn’t recommend it for your main website. However, when it’s done correctly, there no doubt in my mind everyone is going to be engaged, clicking and scrolling around the screen like a pubescent child.

I beg you to go and visit these websites on a desktop computer to experience them in their full glory.

A screenshot of the Big Sound Website
A screenshot of the Gucci Gift Website

There we have my 2018 design trends you should embrace. Now, I’m not saying you should go out there and try to make every one of these a part of your website. Everything should be done in balance. I personally think the main nugget we can take going forward is: to do what is right for your brand; don’t force anything; don’t worry too much about whats current, but do care more about how your users will interact. Cheers 2017!

Lex Davis

By Lex Davis

Chief Graphic Designer and Website Developer at Unity Websites. Lex specialises in the Adobe Suite and is an avid WordPress Enthusiast.

Lex Davis

By Lex Davis

Lex is the Chief Graphic Designer and Website Developer at Unity Websites. He specialises in the Adobe Suite and is an avid WordPress Enthusiast.

Lex Davis

By Lex Davis

Lex is the Chief Graphic Designer and Website Developer at Unity Websites. He specialises in the Adobe Suite and is an avid WordPress Enthusiast.


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