New year, new styles: 2014 will definitely be an exciting year for web design. Industry experts are looking forward to see how fresh ideas in the field will be played out and then develop into new and exciting trends.
But what about the the trends that should be left behind? Web design as a regenerating art needs to shed off a few outdated and sloppy habits. Let’s wave goodbye to these web design trends:
Pages, Pages, Pages
Websites that are divided into endless pages and that feature a ridiculously massive amount of content are becoming a thing of the past. When you design your website, think about the function of each page and whether it’s really necessary. You’ll usually know you did a good job not when you can’t think of anything to add, but when you see nothing you can actually remove. If you’re looking for inspiration, these gorgeous 1-page websites will give you a good lesson in minimalism.
These decorative cuties have been making websites sparkle for over two years. They gave us a good service, but isn’t it time to let them go? Because ribbons were so dominant in the past couple of years, any contemporary website that uses them will sooner or later seem a bit outdated.
Unreal Stock Photos
If you want people to relate to your website, you can’t use generic stock photos that don’t echo your unique voice and personality. Be bold and use images of people who are not perfect, choose photos that are more real, and your visitors will reward you with their trust.
Confusing Websites with Newspapers
Lengthy text boxes, serif fonts, tiny letters – can all work wonders in print. Online, things work differently. Short texts and bigger, readable fonts have a far better outcome. Think big but keep it simple.
It was Apple that made skeuomorphism a trend, and it was Apple that marked its fall from grace. Skeuomorphism means representing things through design like they would appear in real life (think about the old iPhone books app that actually looked like a book shelf). When Apple launched the latest iOS version, skeuomorphism was all gone from the design scheme. Time to say goodbye.
Ambiguous Content Hierarchy
In trying to adopt the Tile-style (made famous by Pinterest), many websites end up looking mostly messy. Not every type of content works with columns and tiles. Site visitors need to be able to read the website’s content in an orderly manner that immediately clarifies your site’s purpose.
Mixing fonts – not a smart move. What does Arial, Helvetica and Waltograph have in common? Not much, actually. Design your website by sticking to two or three font types maximum, and be consistent with the distribution (one font for paragraphs, one for headlines, etc.).
Too Many Share Buttons
Sure, you want to spread your content to the entire world, but what happens when you add too many buttons and options? You get the site visitors confused and clutter your website with icons that don’t necessarily sit well with your design. Choose the most important networks and use only their buttons.
Obscure Color Contrast
Thumb rule – your site visitors want to read your texts and view the images with ease. When you choose bad contrasts (light blue and slightly less light blue, for instance), you are adding unnecessary effort to your visitors’ experience. The solution? Use contrast to make content stand out.
Overly Clever Icon Menus
Icons are fun and they make web design more challenging, but they definitely should not make the user experience challenging as well. When you use a a pigeon dove icon for a “Get in Touch” button, you are making your visitors think too much instead of just clicking. Use icons to compliment words, not represent them.