Changes in design trends for Websites is exciting and progressive but there is fallout for SEO that you need to consider too!
The design of your website these days is paramount to getting your visitors to stay, hang out and click about. That time on-site in turn should result in a sale, engagement and if you’re really lucky a brand advocate. Website design in particular, has moved on a lot in the last decade. What’s hot now is quite different from sites of old. Nowadays simplicity and elegance are what’s leading; not overwhelming the viewer with information, but rather taking them on a gentle, guided journey.
As companies and designers become more intuitive towards what their audience seeks, new design trends are emerging. You’ve probably already noticed some of them during your daily browsing. Flat design particularly but also background or full-screen videos on the homepage. We’re also seeing an increase in engaging storytelling through design.
We found this great infographic by Coastal Creative showing the newest design trends. It illustrates some of the trends that have been emerging over the last couple years, as well as what innovative, new strategies we can expect to see more of in the future.
Their predictions for the top 8 design trends of 2016 are:
- The Rise of Flat Material Design
- Background & Fullscreen Videos
- Mobile Apps & Social Sites will Dominate
- Responsive Design with Better Performance
- Correct Typography: Fit the Theme
- Increased Minimalism: Stripping it Back
- Storytelling: Designing Personality
- Card-Based Interface Design
But it’s all very well following the trends, but it’s important you’re also aware of the impact these have on SEO!
If it isn’t already, 2016 is the year you must make your website mobile friendly. Check out the stats! They tell us that more people are using their Smartphones and Tablets to search than are using desktops.
Please make sure your website is responsive. And if this means nothing to you i’ll clarify – It means that the styling alters its size as the screen gets smaller. People will click away from your site if they have to do a lot of scrolling or resizing and you’ll simply lose business.
Minimalist = De-Clutter
One of the best things you can do to increase your on-site metrics is to embrace a minimalist design. People want useful content quickly; when you have too much going on, this distracts them from their goal. Much like delivering great content, having an easy-to-navigate page will be good for SEO for a long time.
Pinterest, Tumblr, Facebook and just about every other social media website use this. Instead of having single pages end and begin, the infinite scroll saves readers time by putting a lot of content on a single, very long page. Social media is huge and continues to grow so something they are doing is working so it makes sense to incorporate one of their most successful features!
Furthermore, the mobile environment incorporates scrolling pages almost exclusively. Since most people conduct searches using their mobile devices these days, it makes sense for your website to be easily navigable. Scrolling pages look better – when done right – and allow the user to focus on the content you want them to see.
Tile design is one of the most popular design these days. Thanks to Microsoft and their launch of Windows 8 you’ll see it almost everywhere.
Billions of people still visit websites using traditional computers, and the so-called board design is growing in popularity. Basically, your site looks like a collection of cards. Pinterest again is a good example of this. It makes for easy site organization for you, and easy navigation for your viewers. You can see one of our examples of the use of this style in our portfolio.
The Banner Slider
These are coming to the end of their days. Why? Because metrics show that people simply don’t read them. For some reason or another, readers tend to skip over banners in a slideshow. It may seem like a shortcut to you, because it lets you squeeze more information into a space; but the numbers do not lie – no one wants to scroll through them.
As we said at above, embrace flat design
The number one reason for this is image size. Flat images are a part of the minimalist movement in SEO web design, and for good reason. Firstly, smaller images mean your site loads faster. Secondly, flat pictures translate much better to the mobile environment. When going from the desktop to the Tablet, you want categories and buttons to scale appropriately – and flat design incorporates this seamlessly.
Videos as Background
For evidence that this works, just check out PayPal.com. You’ve noticed the video in the background of the site, and how it draws and keeps your attention, right?
This tactic works across any industry when it is relevant to the services you provide. In terms of SEO, it keeps people on the website for longer periods of time. Fact is; people would rather watch something than read – just look at the popularity of YouTube.
You may have many things you want your visitors to do, it is imperative that you present to them as few options as possible.
Sheena Iyengar of Columbia Business School gave a TED talk on the importance of smoothing out the decision-making process for consumers. If you can help them narrow down the choices available you’ll see your click rates go up.
Also note that Google’s latest update appears to downgrade sites with too many subcategories. This is a response to peoples’ interaction with the search engine, so it makes sense to start providing them with what they want. Decide what’s most important, and diminish the number of actions it takes to get there.
In conclusion, always think of your visitors first, and implement the SEO web design that optimizes your website for them. Keep a close eye on your Analytics. That way you’ll be sure not to miss what is and is not working. Although SEO is dynamic, one thing never changes: Google will reward sites that produce content that the audience is interacting with.