The year 2012 was an event-full year for the digital media industry, a year of consolidations and collaborations, a year where we saw social media taking the central role and digital agency buy outs. All these show a good sign for 2013 and leave us with the hope that more path breaking things will happen. At this juncture, let me do a brief review of web design trends in 2012 highlighting the some of the most talked about topics.
1. Responsive Web Design – The concept that design and development of a website should respond to a user’s behaviour and environment based on screen size, orientation and platform had played a major role in taking websites to every gadget. Web designers and developers are using fluid layouts and media queries to find many more stylesheets and making the sites easily viewable across multiple screens sizes and devices. The year saw many traditional websites moving to Tablets and Smartphones, paving way for more reach and enhanced business goals. Many e-commerce sites have reaped the benefit of this, as consumers started purchasing through mobiles & tablets. The hellofisher.com is a good example of responsive web design.
2. HTML5 & CSS3 : More brilliant and beautiful sites were built with HTML5 and its use will continue to grow in 2013 as many designers will move to this latest version for rich content, elegance and accessibility. In 2012, CSS3 gradually gained popularity due to its increased flexibility in presenting the website content and many browsers started supporting it. Together HTML5 &CSS3 will give some serious designer credibility and their use was seen majorly in 2012. Some great examples of the use of this are Roger Dubuis and Desiign.
3. Infographics: This is an important highlight because, never before has information been presented in such a simple and lucid way like Infographics made it possible in 2012. Even if you don’t know about the topic, Infographics provide data, supporting imagery and charts, making it simple for you to understand. There is definitely scope for improvisation and I hope to see many more innovative Infographics in 2013. A growing number of sites use them as to make their content more visual and hence I chose to count it in as one of the web design trends in 2012. You can know more or try out some basic infographic designs, here
4. Parallax Scrolling: The way we navigate websites has been changed to rich user experience and engagement, ever since Parallax Scrolling came into play and this became a trend in the web design world. Though it is quite expensive and complex in implementation, there were many adopters of Parallax Scrolling because of the creative way of displaying content and visually appealing formats that it provides.
Want to see more? You can find some of the best sites in 2012 with Parallax Scrolling here.
5. Rich Typography: Fonts play a crucial role in the design aesthetics and are undoubtedly one of the most essential elements of good web design. Plenty of alternate font options were made available in 2012. Typekit and Google web fonts are some of the prominent ones while there are many more alternate systems to build dynamic fonts. The year 2012 saw lots of innovation and improvisation in typography.
6. WordPress Themes : With tens of millions of websites powered by WordPress, programmers are constantly innovating their themes to keep pace with the development cycles of WordPress. Some of the top themes can be found here. These reflect some of the web design trends in 2012.
The year 2013 is bright as well as challenging for designers and developers, as the size, platform and environment of viewing websites is constantly evolving. I hope to see many more interesting trends this year as well.