The UX trends of 2020 are unlike those from years before—users now require more value when they browse websites, and this is driving the development of company sites.
We look at the biggest trends of 2020 that web developers need to know of when developing brand websites.
People with impairments have long been left out of conversations about the digital realm—but that trend is finally changing in 2020.
There has already been a slight shift towards making websites more inclusive so people with impairments can use them with ease and this trend will really take off this year.
Web developers will need to adjust how they create websites—for instance, keeping enough space around text and using large, clear fonts to improve readability.
When using icons, use well-known symbols that can be interpreted by all readers—this guide on symbols and meanings in design explains how.
Color use also needs to be looked at—higher contrast colors paired together are easier to see for people with color-blindness.
Calls to action and errors should not be denoted solely using color, but with a notification and visible labels.
Imagery will have to have complete descriptions and optimized alt-tags for screen-readers—which is also great for SEO!
Inclusivity has to become a priority in 2020 for all web developers, as well as in workplaces.
And as we have outlined here, it doesn’t require a complete overhaul of a website, only a change in point of view.
Movement in web design has become increasingly more important in growth driven web design.
But an over-reliance on video hasn’t had the expected outcomes—nor is it easy on the marketing budget.
However, web developers can focus their efforts on another element that doesn’t take as much time and effort as video production—simple animations.
Animations can be quite time-consuming and expensive to create—but these aren’t the kind that we are discussing here.
The animations taking over UX trends in 2020 will be simpler, and meaningful—they will be designed and implemented to enhance the experience of a web visitor, as well as for aesthetics.
We will see more parallax and looping animations—this will give the user a sense of movement as they scroll down and through elements.
Animations will also be used to highlight elements and encourage clicks—underlining or circling text as the user moves around the page so they know where to go next.
The best thing about this UX trend is that technology and software are making it easier to accomplish, without losing out on website speed or aesthetics.
There are now plugins and online tools available for developers, so these animations do not have to be designed into the code or produced by an animator.
UI and UX have been overly focused on symmetry in the last few years, which is why we are now seeing design move in the opposite direction—towards asymmetry.
The clean, square or rectangle blocks of the past are no longer on-trend for web development in 2020—users need more information from websites and they need it fast.
Thus, we now see asymmetrical layouts where multiple sets of information are presented—optimized for the widescreen of a desktop or laptop.
As popular as the infinite scroll method of design had become—it hasn’t necessarily been doing its job of keeping users engaged on the brand website.
Instead, web developers can now create landing pages that display a variety of information in several aesthetically pleasing, albeit asymmetrical modes, to get the people what they want.
This also ties into another popular trend of 2020—designing around your content. Instead of fitting your content to your page, design has taken the opposite route to optimize UX.
Asymmetrical layouts will take some getting used to. Don’t try to overhaul your site immediately—plan it out first and make the change when you and your audience are ready for it.
Check out Epicurrence’s website—do you see the illustrations used to tell a simple, yet elegant story about people and nature?
Keep that in mind when you update your web design in 2020—storytelling needs to sit at the core of your visuals, and it needs to be displayed through innovative illustrations.
This is a trend that you don’t want to skimp on—if your company can hire an illustrator to design beautiful, branded illustrations, you should definitely go for it.
Users have become accustomed to stock photos—and though they have their use, to really stand out from the crowd, you need new types of visuals.
And the illustrations you create don’t have to be limited to your web design—albeit, that is where they can share a cohesive story—use them in your blog infographics, and on social media.
Illustrations are great for about us pages, or timeline templates, where they can enhance stories already being shared through text.
Toned Down Colors
The color palettes of the past few years have been bold, brash, and maybe a bit too loud. As with the move towards asymmetry, UX color trends are also a backlash to those from the past.
Instead of the bold colors we’ve been seeing, the color scheme of 2020 will be far more toned down.
A muted palette—with white and black base colors—will become prevalent, but the variety of colors in use will remain the same.
This palette change will make the UX on the brand website more calming—and will also help you stand out in the crowd of designers who have yet to catch up on the trend.
We are going to see a lot more typography on websites in 2020—words are going to be used not only to share information but also as design elements.
This will help to focus the user’s attention on specific keywords and areas of your website, and give them encouragement to act in specific ways.
As color palettes become more muted, the fonts we see in WordPress themes will increase—often taking over the screen and arresting the eye.
In 2020, use your words sparingly and wisely to make the most profitable website design.
White Space Use
The upshot of using bold and large text on your website is that it creates abundant space around elements on a page—this white space is going to be on-trend for web design in 2020.
White space has often been dismissed as extraneous to design, something that needs to be filled in or distracted from. But that won’t be the case this year.
In fact, white space is going to be seen in abundance on web pages as design becomes more meaningfully minimalist.
White space will not only be used to make the elements on a page stand out more but also to lead users through the page.
Don’t ignore the importance of white space in 2020—it will enhance user experience greatly.
Augmented reality and virtual reality are fast becoming mainstays of the brand marketing world—websites will now have to reflect this growing UX trend.
Users want interactivity—the static page displaying information to an unengaged reader is no longer driving traffic, let alone sales. Web pages need to be more dynamic.
Think of incorporating interactive realities into web design as a form of gamification—wouldn’t you find it more interesting to read the content of a site that also gives you something to do?
Plus, the more interactive your website is, the longer users will remain on the page, which will also boost your SERP.
And there is a strong possibility of tying into mobile app marketing through AR—IKEA, L’Oreal, and Warby Parker have successfully blended their mobile and desktop presence using AR.
Users need to be given more value through their interactions with a brand, and AR is becoming one of the best ways to achieve that.
Speaking of the rise of AR, we are going to see a bigger push towards device synchronicity in 2020.
Websites are already accessible across desktops, mobiles, and tablets, but what about smartwatches, gaming devices, and smart devices?
The Internet of Things is taking over the world—everything from refrigerators to smart speakers are now controlled by the internet. Websites need to be optimized for these varied devices.
And you can’t forget about voice and visual search, both of which are becoming more popular every day. The latest SEO statistics state a high prevalence of voice search on mobile in 2020.
Think beyond the systems of yesterday when you adapt your website for devices—there are far more smart devices available to the average user now than ever before.
Conclusion: The Future is Simple and Interactive
The UX trends of 2020 are driven by the overuse of design elements of the past.
Whereas cluttered, symmetrical layouts were popular before, we will now see minimalist, asymmetrical designs.
The placid, static pages we have become accustomed to will now become more dynamic and interactive.
UX will focus more on value-added experiences for site visitors, and not just about sharing information.
These are the methods developers can use to improve site traffic and conversions.