The user interface (UI) presents a decisive factor in determining users’ satisfaction, and it goes even beyond the very first impression it offers. UI design has the power to grasp the user’s attention, affect their mood, engage them and guide their navigation, and ultimately establish a trust for the brand. That’s why each year brings about new UI design trends as creators strive to improve on their previous work and impress users, regarding both aesthetics and functionality. This perpetually changing field demands we always stay up to date and it’s fascinating to keep up with, so here are the hottest trends this year that are shaping UI design for web and mobile.
UI Design Trends for Web
Eliminating the homepage
It’s hard to imagine a website without a homepage – what’s going to be the point of entry if not the homepage? But this year is bringing about changes that seek to align UI design with how users actually prefer to interact with websites. We’ll be seeing more and more websites with more than one entry point according to each user’s preferences, where a user’s location and web history will help determine which entry point suits them best.
On the other hand, the elimination of the homepage can take a different direction: storing all content on one single main page. This is the introduction of seamless interfaces which we’ll be seeing more and more of, as all data can be drawn to the one page where visitors can conveniently access it in an organized manner. When a user clicks on something that interests them, the content is loaded on the page without transitions.
Responsive design and mobile optimization have become the norm, but 2018 is taking it to the next level: designing websites for the mobile-first experience. Now, the most experienced web development agencies are emphasizing the importance of mobile-first web design in order for business websites to succeed both with users and Google’s search engine rankings. The Google search results page will now be displaying mobile versions of web pages at the top even when the browsing is done on a desktop so this aspect of web design will be a useful tool for businesses who want to gain a competitive advantage – until it becomes the absolute norm.
Big and bold
This year is all about vibrant color schemes that grasp the user’s attention and big, bold fonts that get a message across much like an actual image would. Bold type fonts are perhaps the hottest trend that many websites are employing in authentic ways in order to stand out. Essentially, these vibrant color schemes and loud fonts complement whitespace perfectly to get a message across and guide the user’s navigation in a time of very short attention spans.
UI Design Trends for Mobile
When it comes to mobile apps, the material design is steadily overtaking flat design as the hottest approach nowadays. Material design is ideal for apps because it can create a strong foundation for the user interface – it is a design language rather than a toolbox, and developers are increasingly relying on this set of principles to optimize the UI and UX for mobile apps. That’s why its use is spreading to iOS apps as well, although it was primarily designed for Android.
The 18:9 aspect ratio layout
We’re moving toward bezel-less phone design on a large scale, as smartphone producers seek ways to get rid of the phone frame and let the display take over as much as possible. Now, what we can recognize among numerous manufacturers is that they all stick with the 18:9 aspect ratio with the display because it works best. This means that the UI and app design will be largely affected by this ratio, most notably regarding the page layout and the “thumb zone”.
Gradients are back
The vibrant color schemes and bold typefaces that work well with web UI apply to app design as well. We’ll be seeing a lot of calming pastel color interceded by bright colors in order to add emphasis and effect. These accents are largely shaping UI design as they work great for headings and scrolling while allowing for more texture in apps.
User interfaces are continuously evolving and developers are surprising us with interesting trends each year. This year is no different, as the trends we’ve listed are proving to be a huge hit – and many of them are here to stay. Undoubtedly, there are more exciting changes to look forward to regarding UI design for web and mobile, and we’ll be sure to keep an eye on them.