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Back to Basics: What You Need To Know About Website Design and Development for 2021

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The developments that occurred over the course of 2020 only confirmed what many in the business community knew all along: the need for an online presence is crucial to the long-term viability of any business or organization. As we begin 2021, it has become increasingly clear that the way the world does business has changed dramatically. If a company intends to continue to grow its customer base and compete in new markets, the need for a website that provides accurate information while also maintaining viewer interest is paramount. That is where a digital agency like 1SEO in Philadelphia, comes into play. With our extensive knowledge of website design and development, our team works diligently to provide businesses with the latest in design trends.

Contrary to popular perception, the techno-fantastical website designs of the early 21st Century no longer hold the sway they once had. As the internet has become increasingly intertwined with daily life, the pursuit of more hyper-realistic website design is now taking place. Designers are now concentrating on making websites more visually appealing yet grounded in concepts built on traditional forms of artistic expression. 

At 1SEO, the premier digital agency located in Philadelphia, PA, we are constantly keeping an eye on the latest trends in website design and development. Here we will discuss some of the changes taking place in website design and development for the upcoming year.

Comfortable Hues

With the increased use of screens for both personal and professional reasons, eye strain and headaches have become more common in users. Taking this into account, website designers are now shifting their focus on using softer colors in website design. 

This shift first appeared during last year as many social media platforms began giving their users an option for a darker format when using their applications. This trend is now becoming dominant in the realm of websites, with designers utilizing light pinks, pastel blues, warm browns, and deep greens in place of the bright colors once associated with website development. These natural tones provide a superior user experience and also bring an element of “life” to the online world.

Out of the Light and Into the Shade

Another trend that has been slowly growing in momentum over the last few years is abandoning the use of color gradients in background colors for more subtle shading cues that give the illusion of 3D imagery. Intricate manipulation of color shading allows icons and call-to-action buttons to appear lifted from the 2D plane of the computer or phone screen. This provides a greater sense of realism and increases user interest, leading to more significant interaction with the website. Look for the continuation of shading to create the appearance of 3D dimensional planes in web pages as designers look to bring lifelike elements into the digital realm.

Into the Abstract

Primitive abstraction has returned in the form of web design and is fast becoming the go-to form for many of the newest web pages. Layers of geometric shapes of all kinds are being implemented to increase interest and guide a user’s eyes to defined areas of any given web design. These arrangements of abstraction are replacing illustrations and stock photos because they have greater flexibility and longevity when it comes to maintaining a “fresh” look on a page. As this style continues, look for greater usage of layered geometric abstractions to smooth transformations during page scrolling and graphics changes.

Amazing Animations

The use of animations in web design is not new, yet the implementation of parallax animation has breathed new life into the practice. Parallax animation takes advantage of the human eye’s inability to differentiate movement speed between foreground and background imagery effectively.

During everyday activities, objects that are closer in the field of vision appear to move faster than things that are farther away. Although the brain has grown accustomed to this in the real world, when these actions take place on a screen, it creates elements of both realism and surrealism for the human eye. In addition, a false sense of depth is achieved with motion leading to an immersive experience for users. Look for greater use of animation in web design and development as designers continue to pursue more techniques to convert the average computer screen into something more akin to the stage of a theater, with design elements acting as pseudo-actors drawing the user further and further into direct interaction with a web page.

The Shadow Effect

In the early part of the 2010s, a technique called skeuomorphism gained heightened popularity in web design and development. It combined elements of outdated materials into the modern methods of that era, creating a sense of familiarity for users when navigating a web page. During the latter part of the 2010s, skeuomorphism was replaced by a flat design that simplified user experience through uniformity. These two dominant trends in web design are now merging into a single form called neumorphism. Neumorphism implements both familiar flat color tones with drop shadow effects to create the appearance of realistic 3D imagery. Similar to the shading effects now becoming popular in design and development, neumorphism’s goal is to further connect the user with the visuals they are experiencing with a visually heightened sense of realism.

Roll With the Scroll

Although scrolling is often considered a matter-of-fact function for almost every aspect of the web, it is important to remember that scrolling is the first interaction a user participates in when viewing a page. Since scrolling is usually the first action completed by a user, designers are now implementing intricate transitional designs to increase visual feedback while looking over a web page. Look for web developers to continue to make more elaborate, colorful, and impactful scrolling features to increase user interest and engagement.

Web Design and Development for Specific Industries

It is important to note that your website should be designed to accommodate the particular business or industry you are involved in. Complicated web designs may be suitable for one field of business, while they may not be for another. That is why it is essential to consult with a digital agency like 1SEO in Philadelphia, PA, before beginning the process of creating an online presence for your company. Here are some brief tips for specific service industries when they undertake new web designs.

Web Design for Home Services

The Home Services industry is built upon the concept of ease-of-use informational gathering and contact follow-through. Thus, when designing a website for a home services company, it is essential to remember that visitors to the site are looking for defined information quickly. It would be wise to implement more minimalistic designs that can guide the user to specific content areas and call-to-action functions. Although designs could include animations and current color trends, a home services website’s strategy should ultimately be geared towards a resource for company information and services. This will allow users to get pertinent information and make contact with the business quickly and effectively.

Web Design for eCommerce

Since many eCommerce websites are essentially the only sales platform for companies, it is important to maintain user interest when visiting the website. An eCommerce website should incorporate many of the attention-grabbing features that are trending in design and development to maintain user interactivity while shopping. Scrolling features should incorporate product imagery, and informational sections should easily catch the attention of the user. This will heighten web page activity and, when done correctly, increase sales.

Web Design for Professional Services

Professional services websites should be viewed as informational hubs with defined call-to-action functions that are easily recognizable to the user. As not to overwhelm the user’s experience, minimalist designs should be implemented on informational pages so that the text can be easily read. That said, professional service websites should still implement animations and other forms of heightened interactivity on homepages to draw the user further into the information-based interior pages.

Web Design and Development for the 21st Century

The digital world continues to evolve, providing new and exciting techniques for web design and development. With advances in technology and human ingenuity, web design will become more and more interactive and merge the real world with the virtual. This is vital as the online experience continues to shift from viewing web pages on a computer screen to viewing web pages on a mobile device. Greater interactivity is crucial to developing new marketing strategies as the business will be able to determine what design techniques garner more user attention. Through the implementation of compelling web designs, customers will be drawn further into web-based informational channels that will better their knowledge of a company and the services it offers.

At 1SEO, the leading digital agency in Philadelphia,PA, our web designers are artists, highly-skilled in creating digital environments that will captivate your target audience. They have had years of experience studying design elements and implementing them into web pages to create an aesthetically-pleasing, user-friendly website. By using your brand colors, product images, and business-related information to mold a professional, informative, and compelling website, your company will have the tools needed to develop new markets and secure future business.

For more information about 1SEO’s web design and development services, please feel free to contact us. We will be happy to begin the process of shaping an effective online presence for your business.

About the Writer:

John De Lancey is a content writer at 1SEO. He is the proud father of two little boys and enjoys writing, painting, and photography in his spare time.

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