As one of the top web design agencies in Bedford, we typically see two types of client; those who know exactly what they want, and those who have a little inspiration, but generally just want something that is clean, modern and current.
So, for all of you out there that are looking to build or revamp a website, here’s seven trends that we think will be the hallmark of a modern website in 2015.
1. Large Images
Once upon a time, large, high-resolution images would have been bandwidth-sucking impracticalities.
But nowadays, thanks to both faster connections, better cameras and smoother image compression, having a rich, detailed image as a background or as part of a carousel or slider can offer a really captivating first impression for a visitor.
Many of our web design clients are also finding that building a site around a large image ultimately makes it easier to keep a site’s identity intact when displaying on a tablet or large-screen smartphone.
2. Long Scrolling Sites
A couple of years ago it was trendy – particularly for businesses – to keep all the information on a website homepage visible on a single screen. Fixed bottoms and frames kept all the essential – and some of the corporate fluff, too – ‘above the fold’, so visitors could see everything in one go.
But with smartphones simply not designed to display that way (they’re obviously portrait rather than a monitor’s landscape) web designers are once again looking to the vertical scroll to fit more on a homepage.
Savvy site-builders also know that having some information below the fold can help increase time on site, click-throughs and reduce bounce-rates, too – all good for SEO.
3. Reading Lists
Following on from that last point, we’re expecting to see a lot more sites swap out ‘suggested article’ links for auto-populating reading lists.
If you have a news page or blog section, a great way to draw attention to older articles is to have them automatically appear as they reach the end of another relevant post – and keeping readers engaged in the process.
4. Telling A Story in HTML5
With older HTML editions, if you wanted to offer the chance a visitor an interactive experience, you’d have to use memory-hungry Flash, embedded Java or a third-party kit like Slideshare.
With HTML5, we’re expecting more businesses and individuals to take advantage of the flexibility of the platform to offer up engaging stories on their whole business or individual products as part of their web design brief.
One of the most crucial on the list, security will be a big topic for any web developer or hosting company going into 2015.
2014 was peppered with security snafu’s: from Sony’s leaks towards the end of the year, Microsoft’s Xbox live being taken down by hackers ‘Lizard Squad’ or Moonpig’s embarrassing app design – keeping data safe will be a huge task over the coming months.
Whilst your Bedford-based business might not face these challenges, knowing that Google are offering search preference to sites with https over http – and why – is certainly worth your time.
6. ‘Web-First’ Company Identities
When you look at Google Analytics and Adwords reports at the end of the month, unless you’re advertising in Piccadilly Circus, it’s pretty clear that the web is where your business gets in front of the most eyeballs.
So why do some design agencies think it’s enough to slap an out-dated logo on a template site and be done with it?
Expect to see more businesses focus on new websites and their brand identity on digital services like Twitter, Facebook and Google+ in 2015 than ever before.
7. Handmade-Looking Websites
Can something look handmade and quirky if it’s designed with digital precision? Google sure hope so.
The search engine giants are raising plenty of eyebrows with the Google Material design specification – intended to combine the texture and tactility of paper and ink with the ‘imagination and magic of digital’ .
Better yet, it aims to be preservable across all platforms – desktop, tablet and smartphone – feeding in nicely to our point on a prioritising a digital-first brand identity.
Are there any trends that you’re pegging for big things in 2015?
Let us know with a comment, or drop us a tweet!