UX Design in 2017: 5 Trends to Watch

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As the world of technology continues to evolve, so does what users are expecting from websites. Today, there’s a lot more to consider besides just having a site; the user experience plays a major role in the success of your website. So how do you create a design with a great user experience? Here are five UX trends to keep in mind as we continue into 2017!

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UX Design Trend #1: Tell a Story With Your Homepage

Today, users are more comfortable than ever with the action of scrolling. It’s nothing new, and it’s not going away anytime soon. Social platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have trained us to constantly scroll down a page for more information. While it is still important to prioritize the information on your homepage, keeping content above the fold is less critical than it used to be. 

Because of this, we are starting to see more long-scroll and long-form content on websites. This is where storytelling comes into play. When you design your homepage to tell a compelling story, it allows you to be more conversational, increases user engagement and introduces users to your brand in a friendly way.

Tips for Telling a Story on Your Homepage:

  • Start with an introduction to your brand. 
  • Include large, easily readable section headers that add supporting information like your products and services. This will help users scan down the page.
  • Incorporate white space between section elements.
  • Add links within each section so users can learn more about specific topics.
  • Include compelling call-to-action buttons.
  • Be visually engaging! Use videos and appealing images when possible.

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UX Design Trend #2: Use Animation Strategically

While animation is often added to websites to add excitement and flair, it can also be used to improve user experience. Animation can be used to make interactions on your website both fun and meaningful, which can enhance usability in two important ways.

  1. Animations keep users focused on a certain area.
    Is there an element to which you want to bring attention? Do you want users to spend more time focusing on links to your services? A little animation can go a long way. Motion can help keep users on the path you’ve laid out leading them to a conversion.

  2. Motion can improve a user’s ability to navigate.
    This trend will be top of mind in 2017 because it can help users navigate your website. Have you ever scrolled down a website, and as you scrolled, new elements were revealed? This type of strategic animation helps guide users as they move through your content. 

While animation can be helpful, it can also be distracting when used incorrectly. Make sure that when you add an animation to your website, it is adding value by either making the user’s experience easier, helping the user complete their task, or is making their experience more enjoyable.

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UX Design Trend #3: Say Goodbye to Banners

Advertising online grows every day, and users are becoming trained to know that the top and the right side of a website are common areas to place ads. This has caused what industry leaders call “banner-blindness.” Users subconsciously ignore content placed in these two sections of the website. 

For this reason, an emerging technique to improve user experience is the use of artistic, full-screen hero images. Visually appealing hero images grab the user’s attention and have become the more effective option over carousels and banners. This image is the perfect opportunity to introduce your brand to website visitors. The hero image is an optimal place for a short tagline or a call-to-action because you already have the user’s attention. 

Many companies use their hero image to represent their business. For example, a bakery might include a professional photo of their cupcakes, or a company that prides themselves on their close-knit team may use a picture of their team members working. 

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UX Design Trend #4: Using Cards to Improve Scannability

Card-based designs are becoming more popular due to their ability to enhance the user experience on your website. Cards are the rectangles you often see on newly designed websites that contain images and text along with a link directing users to more information. This type of design is rising in popularity because cards are great at communicating information quickly. 

Studies have shown that the human attention span has dropped to eight seconds. This means that users need to be able to easily and quickly scan your website because they will not spend much time consuming a lot of information. Cards easily divide content, making it possible for users to process and absorb information more quickly and more effectively.

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UX Design Trend #5: Engaging Videos

One of the most critical trends to watch in 2017 is the increase in full-screen, engaging videos on websites. Throughout the last few years, visual elements have become more and more essential when it comes to the user experience on websites. In 2017, take it one step further with video. Video is dynamic, and it’s an excellent tool to catch the eyes of users and visually tell your brand’s story.  

While compelling photos and engaging images are going to continue to stick around, interactive videos are only going to continue to grow in 2017. 

Keep up With the 2017 UX Design Trends With Blue Compass

If you’re planning a website redesign in 2017, utilizing these UX design tips can make your website more effective than ever. Are you wondering where to start? Our team can work with you to conduct UX research to learn how users are interacting with your site, and we will use this information to design a website that will be effective and enjoyable for users.

Contact us today to learn more about how our UX designers can help you create a website that users will love!

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