If we were to take a glance at the past decade, we would see web design trends evolving at a subtle and gradual pace. However, the past two years have brought enormous cultural and societal shifts that reflect upon the world of web design as well.
In May 2021, another seismic change happened. Google introduced its Page Experience update forcing web designers to put much greater emphasis on user experience if they want to keep enjoying all the benefits of the first page of Google’s search results. Elements like loading speed, interactivity, safe browsing, and visual stability will very much shape web design trends in 2022. So, to help you stay in line with the fast-paced world of web design, our web design agency in Chicago shares its forecasts on the hottest web design trends for 2022.
Besides simply looking for relevant information, we as consumers want that information presented most conveniently. Among the hottest web design trends that will entertain our visual senses in 2022, one particularly stands out in terms of engagement and conversion rates – dynamic content.
Dynamic websites display content to users based on their geographic location or online behavior, such as browsing history or recent purchases. This means that the content a website shows to a user in Chicago very much differs from the content displayed to a user in Amsterdam.
Personalized recommendations can be as much as twice as effective as non-personalized ones.
Dynamic content achieves a high level of personalization and is therefore bound to persist as one of the main web design trends in 2022.
The trend of enhanced accessibility and availability across the web will continue throughout the year 2022. In the following year, we are very likely to see the rise of virtual and augmented reality and many other features that don’t rely on keyboard or mouse-based inputs.
Though many websites have already made steps in this direction, further incorporation of this type of comprehensive design will make it much easier for physically challenged people to access information online.
Video content still holds its title as the undisputed king of online engagement. On the other hand, videos can enormously increase the loading time of your website. Since optimizing for speed never goes out of fashion, we expect to see micro animations such as GIFs emerge as one of the main web design trends in 2022. Micro animations can engage users and prompt them to take desired actions while saving precious loading seconds. Here is why designers consider micro animations as one of the hottest web design trends for 2022:
- Micro animations capture users’ attention
- They improve navigation
- They deliver feedback to users
Incorporating well-designed micro animations will give your website a special flare.
Today, mobile devices account for over 53% of global online traffic. People find it easier to access information online from the palms of their hands than via PC or laptop. With so many users browsing on their handheld devices, it is easy to predict that even more attention will be dedicated to mobile-first design. This sets all kinds of obstacles for web designers. One of them is organizing menus that are packed with links. Huge makes great use of full-screen overlay menus that scale well between both desktop and handheld devices while aligning clickable elements within reach of a thumb.
An intuitive layout that is easy to navigate only with your thumb will continue to be among the hottest web design trends throughout 2022 and further on.
Dynamic or single-page scrolling is a web design feature that fits all of your content on one page. This minimizes the friction your website visitors may feel while browsing since they now don’t have to click to access another main pillar page. Add parallax scrolling to the mix, and you will turn your website into a magnificent storytelling tool and lead magnet.
Web design & art history does an amazing job in keeping users captivated and engaged in the narrative through a whole range of parallax scrolling techniques.
Numerous apps already offer this feature, and it will remain among the main web design trends in 2022. A dark mode design is a fresh alternative to the usual color template we grew accustomed to. Web designers find this color palette very helpful in highlighting content and imagery they want us to focus on. Besides giving apps a fun new vibe, the dark mode also solves many accessibility issues. A dark color palette allows users to strain their eyes less. Continuous eye strain can cause headaches and even lead to some long-term sight problems.
Here is how Facebook uses a dark color scheme to grab users’ attention.
It seems that we simply can’t get enough interactive content. From quizzes to polls, websites that feature tasteful and relevant interactive content will continue to encompass our attention in 2022 and years to come.
While it was perfectly fine a few decades ago to wait 30 seconds for a website to load, this practice is unacceptable today. People now have a much shorter attention span and anything beyond 5 seconds makes them anxious. Websites that take between 2 and 3 seconds to load enjoy double the conversion rate compared to those that take 4.2 seconds. If it takes 5 or more seconds, people bounce. Increased loading time leads to poor user experience, which you must attend to as quickly as possible, especially after the Google Core Vitals update release.
Pinterest is a perfect example of how website performance can have a massive impact on the success of your business. By reducing perceived wait times by 40%, they saw an increase in both search engine traffic and sign-ups by 15%.
Optimizing for speed never goes out of fashion, and it is bound to remain one of the hottest web design trends in 2022.
A decade ago, the web was dominated by websites with purely functional interfaces. That made perfect sense at the time, since by the appearance of the first iPhone in 2007, most people were pretty unfamiliar with the internet. Back then, ease of use was web designers’ top priority.
Today, most people are familiar with digital platforms, which opens the door for experimenting with a wider array of web design solutions. Radiant colors, joyful features, outlandish typography, and optimistic messaging are set to dominate the digital world in the year to come.
That joyful approach to color and experimenting with animation is pushed a step further on designers Anton and Irene’s online portfolio. Scrolling down their homepage is so much fun as images move to make way for text while every piece of content is given room to breathe.
Colorful minimalism and bold, bright, saturated colors are a perfect match and the one that will make your website stand out from the crowd of soft and neutral-colored websites from yesteryears. Furthermore, besides radiating optimism, each color sends a subliminal message to your users. So, we suggest you do a bit of research on which color communicates your brand’s values and follow one of the main web design trends for 2022.
Check how Bubly combines bold and saturated colors with a minimalistic approach.
Mindful web design
It seems like up until yesterday, our lives were like a busy street during rush hour, noisy and perfectly unpredictable. Then, all of a sudden, lockdown came, and our personal world got simpler and quieter. The world of web design was quick to mimic this shift, and we can see more areas influenced by a sense of restrained calm.
Web designers worldwide are switching to clean design choices infused with white space to let your eyes rest and content breathe. Luckily, this trend supports the requirements of Google’s latest algorithm update, so we can see it extend well into 2022. The simplicity of mindful web design allows for fast-loading websites that enjoy higher search engine rankings.
This trend is also in tune with Google’s demands for mobile-friendly websites. With such a wide array of handheld devices at our disposal, creating a website that works well on all of them presents a huge challenge for web designers. However, opting for simpler design choices makes this daunting task much easier to achieve.
Savoir Design’s website presents a great example of mindful web design.
Its controlled sharpness and abundance of white space combined with fun scrolling tricks instantly put your eyes at ease.
Microsoft gets ready for 2022
Microsoft made significant efforts to upgrade the user interface of their Visual Studio 2022 by revamping the theming and iconography to address some of the most popular web design trends for 2022.
Their data showed that the dark theme replaced the light theme as the most popular one over the past year, so their team made quite a few adjustments to it. They adjusted the overall color contrast to improve accessibility as well as added borders to elements when being focused.
They also made the highlight color less intense to reduce distraction and eye strain and avoid that glaring spotlight effect from the previous version of their product. We can confidently say that most of you will welcome this change as it gives the new Visual Studio’s interface an overly calm and soothing feel and supports best practices of mindful web design.
Another thing that saw improvements was iconography. These small yet significant changes perfectly align with tendencies toward minimalism in web design. Colors are simplified to limit, and icons feel modern, legible, and intuitive.
All of these changes give Visual Studio 2022 a distinctly modern tone, as well as tick some of the boxes of our predictions of hottest web design trends for 2022.
iOS 15 UI design choices
iOS 15 made some interesting changes in the user interface of their operating system. As you will notice, their designers also followed some of the main web design trends for 2022. Let’s explore their choices.
The biggest visual change can be seen on the home screen. There you’ll find the brand new weather and maps icons.
As you can notice, their designers choose a somewhat cartoonish style for these icons. While the weather icon features a glassmorphic cloud, the weather icon is painted in strong, bold colors with a strong focus on the direction arrow.
The weather and maps apps have also been refreshed. The weather app got some beautiful animations and now shows more info than before. While the maps app features some color choices that may need getting used to, it is focused on clarity of information more than ever before.
iOS 15 also introduced the beta version of SF Symbols 3, offering designers and developers close to 600 new icons. There are now more than 3000 symbols to incorporate in your projects.
Apple also further developed the symbols’ color customization by introducing four new color rendering models:
- Hierarchical (a single tint color with multiple opacity levels)
- Palette (multiple contrasting colors)
- Multicolor (default colors)
- Traditional monochrome model
With Safari being primarily based on open-source software properties, designing for this web browser also saw significant changes. Since the toolbar appears automatically as needed, you now have more space on the website as the entire interface takes up only one line.
Safari supports both light and dark modes. However, if you choose the color too light for the dark mode, the software will adjust it to provide a better user experience. You also won’t be able to apply colors that negatively impact the readability.
This concludes our list of main web design trends for 2022. Needless to say that two major events shape future design trends and, therefore, our list: the change in society caused by the pandemic and the change in Google’s algorithms that stress the importance of creating fast websites that adapt to the range of handheld devices available today. We have also covered the necessity for inclusive web design as part of an ongoing mission to make the internet accessible to everyone.
One more thing: Our team at Alpha Efficiency has neither a crystal ball nor psychic powers. We can only make educated guesses considering current trends and what stands behind them, and take a sneak peek at the design choices of such giants as Facebook, Apple, or Microsoft. The world of web design is fast-paced and unpredictable, but that’s exactly what makes it so exciting.