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12 Best WordPress Themes for 2021

If you already have a good idea of what you want a new website to look like, the next step would be to decide on the tools you’ll need to put into play to turn that vision into a reality.

  • Tools enable you to present its content in ways that will engage and captivate its audience and gain their trust.
  • Tools that will make your website perform flawlessly in all respects.

That is why choosing the right WordPress theme to get the job done is so important. You want a theme that features the page building tools and design aids that make your task far easier than anticipated.

The following 12 top WordPress themes and plugins have been selected with those purposes in mind. They will not only get the job done for you but do it better than most of the other website-building tools in the marketplace are capable of doing.

The choice is up to you. Whatever that choice may be, it should prove to be a winner.

1. BeTheme

A website-building toolkit that can boast of 40+ core features sounds like a pretty good-sized toolkit, and BeTheme is just that. In fact, this popular (200,000 sales) theme is the biggest WordPress theme of them all.

It’s unlikely you will need to put every one of these core features to use for your next project, but some will be essential, such as –

  • The Muffin Builder page builder, Admin Panel, and Shortcode Generator combine to make BeTheme easy to use, give you a ton of flexibility, and enable you to build your website without any need for coding.
  • Be’s library of shortcodes together with the many Header, Footer, and Grid options, and the new Header Builder extends your design options even more.
  • The Layout Generator will come in handy if you want to start a page from scratch.
  • You’ll love what may be the most important core feature of them all; Be’s selection of 600+ customizable pre-built websites. They cover most industry sectors and website types plus a variety of business niches.

Click on the banner to learn more.

2. Total Theme

Designed with excellence in mind, Total features an exceptional selection of tools and design aids to work with. Total is also well-known for its speed, ease of use, and the flexibility it offers its users.

  • Since you can disable any feature you want to, you won’t be distracted by or bothered with those you don’t intend to use.
  • Total’s 40+ quick import demos and one-of-a-kind theme cards are designed to get your projects off to a rapid start.
  • The Dynamic Template function is a driving force behind this WordPress theme’s remarkable flexibility.
  • You’re given a wealth of design options to work with, thanks to the live customizer and the advanced theme panel.
  • Total is a WordPress plugin and WooCommerce friendly.

Click on the banner to learn more.

3. Avada Theme

When a WordPress theme has the distinction of being the #1 best seller of all time, you can safely assume that those who created it got it right. Avada’s 450,000+ sales can’t easily be ignored.

Look closer, and you’ll see some of the many reasons behind Avada’s popularity.

  • There’s an impressive selection of one-click import demos, pre-built websites, and a wealth of supporting design elements.
  • The Fusion drag and drop builder and Fusion page and theme options enable designers to create complex websites without resorting to coding.
  • 5-star support and free updates ensure users that they will always be able to follow the latest design trends and create websites as they envision them.

Click on the banner to learn more.

4. MaxCoach – Online Courses, Personal Coaching & Education WP Theme

MaxCoach is a specialty tool that enables web designers to create an online distance learning and/or tutoring platform. This LearnPress theme was last year’s #1 coaching theme, and it will most likely be so in 2021 as well.

  • The platform is learner-centric
  • MaxCoach’s design is modern, trendy, and unique
  • Elementor is the drag and drop page builder of choice

Visit the site to see for yourself why this specialty theme has generated so much interest.

5. TheGem – Creative Multi-Purpose High-Performance WordPress Theme

TheGem, WordPress’s ultimate multiuse toolbox, gives its users:

  • A selection of more than 400 professionally-crafted pre-built multi-page and single-page websites
  • Two popular page builders – WPBakery and Elementor
  • Demos, layouts, and page sections you can mix and match to create a look that’s uniquely yours

The GemBlocks with its 300+ pre-designed section templates to speed up your workflow, plus WooCommerce layouts and design aids

6. Uncode – Creative Multiuse & WooCommerce WordPress Theme

The Uncode multi-use WordPress theme is ideal for entrepreneurs, creative individuals, agencies, and small businesses.

  • Its 80.000+ sales to date have made it a ThemeForest best-seller.
  • Features include a unique WooCommerce Custom Builder you can use to give site visitors a supreme shopping experience.

Viewing Uncode’s showcase of user-built websites is a must. Click on the banner to visit the site and prepare to be impressed.

7. Rey Theme

This highly modular popular theme is definitely worth a close look. It is simply one of the most innovative website building tools you’re likely to find on the market today,

  • Rey’s features include a library of professionally-designed templates and an imposing selection of WooCommerce site-building tools
  • It is easy to set up and easy to use
  • You will be more than satisfied with Rey’s robust performance

Rey has built-in SVG support and is user and developer-friendly.

8. Aurum – Minimalist WordPress Theme

With this multiuse minimalist WordPress theme at your fingertips, you’ll be able to create an online store that will give shoppers a fully satisfying shopping experience.

  • With Aurum, you can design megamenus to accommodate huge selections of products
  • Aurum’s page load times are super-fast, and Aurum’s pages are responsive to every screen size
  • Popular plugins are included, and all the popular WordPress plugins are supported

Click on the banner and check it out.

9. Hongo – Modern & Multipurpose WooCommerce WordPress Theme

Its trendy selections of creative design elements and ready-to-go store demos make Hongo an ideal choice for company, blogging, and eCommerce websites.

  • Premium plugins and WPBakery custom shortcodes are among the most popular of Hongo’s website-building features
  • This multipurpose theme also features an attractive selection of product-related tools that include product compare, quick view, wish lists, and product filter

You can expect and receive exceptional user support.

10. XStore – The Most Customizable WooCommerce Theme Ever

With its $39 price tag, XStore gives you more value for your money than you’ll find in any other WooCommerce theme.

  • For starters, there are 100+ good-to-go shops
  • A full Ajax shop is another popular feature
  • As is XStore’s single product page builder and its selection of product filters and display features

Check XStore out if you’re looking for a way to create an awesome online store in no time at all.

11. KnowAll – Knowledge Base Theme

Have you ever come across a FAQ page you really liked? It doesn’t happen often. 

Visitors that can’t find a good answer might decide to make a phone call (and be placed on hold). That answer is OK, but additional information would be more helpful.

With AI-based KnowAll, customers get answers 24/7, and they can search for other relevant information. They will be happier customers, which is obviously good for business.

12. Pofo – Creative Portfolio, Blog, and eCommerce WordPress Theme

Bloggers, creatives, agencies, and those looking to create an eCommerce site should give Pofo a good, hard look.

Pofo is fast, flexible, SEO optimized, and packed with useful features that include:

  • Trendy selections of pre-built design elements, ready-to-go home pages, and one-click import demo pages.
  • Premium plugins, including Revolution Slider and the WPBakery page builder.

Detailed online documentation is provided, and you’ll be more than pleased with this theme’s customer support.

A modern, fast-loading, and smoothly performing theme is what you need. It will help you create a website that will have a significantly positive impact on your business’ growth.

Themes like those presented here can do just that by enabling you to give your website the professional touch you’re looking for. You can do it without having to rely on a single line of code.

These 12 top WordPress themes are modern, trendy, and easy to work with. Trying to find the “best” of the bunch could admittedly be somewhat daunting. But, you can take comfort in the fact that you really can’t make a wrong or bad choice.

 

[– This is a sponsored post –]

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Poll: Should Designers Stay Out of Politics?

The Beazley Design of the Year for 2020 has just been awarded to US architecture firm Rael San FratelloColectivo Chopeke for their Teeter-Totter Wall project, a series of luminous pink seesaws built into the US-Mexico border wall in July 2019.

The 74 shortlisted entrants for the prize range from a poster for vegan burgers to a parody of Pantone’s Color of the Year. Most were self-consciously political.

As design has grown in stature, so has its ability to amplify the opinions that employ it. Most of us will never work on an actual political campaign. Still, there is little doubt that the design teams for both the Obama campaign in 2008 and the Ocasio-Cortez campaign in 2018 were significant factors in the resulting electoral success. And it isn’t just visual design, user experience across a platform has implications; last week, Twitter finally suspended the account of the outgoing US president, a decision that left CEO Jack Dorsey lamenting the platform’s “failure…to promote healthy conversation.”

As designers, our understanding of user experience — particularly the psychology of user experience — has grown immensely in the last decade. We’re very good and persuading people to do things, and that ability is a commodity, saleable to the highest bidder. As such, it is capable of undermining basic democratic principles by skewing debate and exerting disproportionate influence.

We frequently talk about Black Hat and White Hat techniques in the tech industry, but the truth is, almost all designers spend their days looking for ways to manipulate an audience.

When that manipulation extends into political events, do designers have an ethical responsibility to maintain an independent balance, just as we expect reputable journalists to?

Designers are — for now, at least — human beings. We have all of the prejudices, biases, and philosophies of any other human being. Do we have an obligation to use our skills to promote our ideals, or an obligation to resist doing so?

 

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Exciting New Tools for Designers, January 2021

The new year is often packed with resolutions. Make the most of those goals and resolve to design better, faster, and more efficiently with some of these new tools and resources.

Here’s what new for designers this month.

Radix UI

Radix UI is an open-source UI component library for building high-quality, accessible design systems and web apps. It includes examples and guidelines for all kinds of user interface elements that provide guidance and really make you think about accessible website design. (And everything is usable!)

Froala Charts

Froala Charts is made to help you create data visualizations for web or mobile apps. Build any chart you can imagine – bar, line, area, heat map, sankey, radar, time series, and more. Plus, you can customize anything and everything, so it all matches your brand. This premium tool is enterprise-level and comes with a one-time license fee.

CSSfox

CSSfox is a collection of designs that you can use for inspiration. The curated community project includes posts, reviews, and award nominees and winners.

Pattern Generator

Pattern Generator is a tool to create seamless and royalty-free patterns that you can use in projects. Almost every element of the pattern design is customizable, and you can “shuffle” to get new style inspiration. Design a pattern you like and export it for use as a JPG, PNG, SVG, or CSS.

Type Scale Clamp Generator

Type Style Clamp Generator helps you create a visualize a typographic scale for web projects. Pick a font and determine a few other settings and see the scale right on the screen. You can even put in your own words to see how they would look. Then, flip to see how sizes appear on different devices. Find a scale you like and snag the code with a click.

Flowdash

Flowdash is a premium app that helps you build custom tools, data sets and streamline your business operations with one tool. Manage data and processes without code. The tool combines a spreadsheet’s familiarity with a visual workflow builder, plus built-in integrations to automate repetitive tasks so your team can focus on what matters.

Scale

Scale is a website that provides new and open-source illustrations that you can use for projects. Maybe the illustration generator’s neatest part is that you can change the color with just a click to match your brand. Then download the image as an SVG or PNG.

Pe•ple

Pe•ple is a tool that adds a “customizable community” to any website to help grow your fanbase and provide a boost to SEO. It allows you to integrate chat, commenting, emojis, and passwordless login, among other things.

K!sbag: Free Minimal Portfolio Template

K!sbag is a free minimal website template that’s made for portfolio sites. (Did you resolve to update yours in 2021?) It includes 6 pages in a ready-made HTML format and PSD.

Merico Build

Merico Build is like a fitness tracker for code. It uses contribution analytics to empower developers with insight dashboards and badges focused on self-improvement and career growth. Sign up with tools you already use – Github or Gitlab.

Automatic Social Share Images

Automatic Social Share Images solves a common website problem: Missing or broken images when posts or pages are shared on social media. This tutorial walks you through the code needed to create the right meta tags so that popular social media channels pick up the image you want for posts. The best part is this code helps you create a dynamic preview image, so you don’t have to make something special every single time.

Animated SVG Links

Animated SVG Links can add a little something special to your design. This pen is from Adam Kuhn and includes three different link styles.

Blush

Blush helps you create illustrations. With collections made by artists across the globe, there’s something for everyone and every project. All art is customizable, so you can play with variations to create something unique.

Palms

Palms is a set of 43 sets of hands to help illustrate projects. Each illustration is in a vector format and ready to use.

Tabbied

Tabbied allows you to create and customize patterns or artwork in a minimal style for various projects or backgrounds. Tinker with your artwork and patterns and then download a free, high-resolution version.

How to Create Animated Cards

How to Create Animated Cards is a great little tutorial by Johnny Simpson that uses WebGL and Three.js to create a style like those on Apple Music. The result is a stylish modern card style that you can follow along with the CodePen demo.

Bandero

Bandero is a fun slab with a rough texture and interesting letterforms. The character set is a little limited and is best-suited for display use.

Magilla

Magilla is a stunning modern serif with great lines and strokes. The premium typeface family has six styles, including an outline option.

Roadhouse

Roadhouse is one of those slab fonts that almost screams branding design. The type designer must have had this in mind, too, with stripe, bevel, inline, half fill, outline, drop extrude, and script options included. (This family is quite robust, or you can snag just one style.)

Street Art

Street Art is for those times when a graffiti style is all that will do. What’s nice about this option – free for personal use – is that the characters are highly readable.

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Popular Design News of the Week: January 11, 2021 – January 17, 2021

Every week users submit a lot of interesting stuff on our sister site Webdesigner News, highlighting great content from around the web that can be of interest to web designers.

The best way to keep track of all the great stories and news being posted is simply to check out the Webdesigner News site, however, in case you missed some here’s a quick and useful compilation of the most popular designer news that we curated from the past week.

Front-End Performance Checklist 2021

 

Google Design’s Best of 2020

 

Skynet – Build a Free Internet

 

An Early Look at Full Site Editing in WordPress

 

30 Basic Fonts

 

5 Great Ways to Develop your Eye for Design

 

No More Facebook – Privacy-friendly Alternatives to Facebook Products

 

Bold CMS – The CMS that Understands your Content

 

Design in 2021 – What will Design Activism Look Like?

 

LT Browser – Next-gen Browser to Build, Test & Debug Mobile Websites

 

40 Best Canva Alternatives for Effortless Graphic Design

 

How to Design with Contrast

 

Design in 2021 – What will Interactive Design Look Like?

 

20 Essential WordPress Settings to Change

 

No Meetings, no Deadlines, no Full-Time Employees

 

Free Porto Illustrations – Free 20 Stylish Hand Drawn Illustrations

 

Digital Images 101: All You Need to Know as a Designer

 

8 Typography Design Trends for 2021 – [Infographic]

 

Learnings from Designing for Multi-language User Interfaces

 

A UX Analysis of Cyberpunk 2077′s HUD

 

Five Websites Inspired by Vintage Games

 

Effective User Onboarding: Top Proven Tips and Examples

 

Overcoming Common Designer Biases

 

What Makes a Great Business Idea?

 

How to Use Design Thinking to Improve your Daily Workflow

 

Want more? No problem! Keep track of top design news from around the web with Webdesigner News.

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What’s New in Ecommerce, January 2021

Ecommerce design may seem fairly straight-forward; you build an online store that showcases a company’s products or services and gives customers a quick and pain-free way to purchase them.

While that formula will always hold true, ecommerce is undergoing some big changes, and web designers need to be prepared to keep up with them. This monthly ecommerce trends roundup will explore these new and evolving design, sales, and marketing trends.

1. Calmer Color Palettes

Although we’re not likely to see this trend go near the sites for big box stores, it’s something smaller ecommerce companies are adopting. And with good reason.

As consumers become wary about how much money they’re spending, they don’t need to feel pressured or rushed into a purchase. And ecommerce sites that employ calmer color palettes — like pastels and earth tones — will do a better job of putting their customers at ease.

Bicycle saddle manufacture Brooks England shows how this trend plays out in ecommerce design:

It’s not just outdoors or sporting goods companies that can use more natural-looking colors, either. CBD product vendor Cannaray is another company that uses a more subdued color palette:

Really, any store that wants to do a better job creating satisfying experiences for customers and gaining their long-time loyalty should consider toning things down with color.

2. No-rush Shipping Rewards

For years, we’ve seen consumers go crazy for brands that offer free and fast shipping. But thanks to the surge in online shopping in 2020, ecommerce companies, their shipping partners, and delivery service providers just haven’t been able to keep up with the pace.

When customers are unhappy with slow deliveries, they’re going to go to social media and review sites to bombard brands with complaints, as has been happening with Loft since November:

Although many ecommerce stores still don’t inform customers ahead of time about these delays, we’re starting to see a new checkout trend.

Here’s how Gap is encouraging and rewarding customers for choosing no-rush shipping:

Amazon is another ecommerce site that encourages no-rush shipping at checkout with a reward:

Not only does this set better expectations for customers before they finish their purchases, but it encourages everyone to slow down a bit so that ecommerce companies and their shipping/delivery partners can keep up.

3. More Human and Empathetic Assistance

Each year, design trend roundups suggest that AI will play a greater role in web design.

While that may be true for things like the search bar or personalized recommendations, ecommerce sites are pulling back the reins on automated support and assistance.

Best Buy, for instance, offers customers the option to “Shop with an Expert”:

After shoppers go through a quick survey, they’re given a variety of options — based on their own level of comfort and convenience — to work with the expert:

Something that might’ve been left in the hands of a self-service quiz or automated chatbot is being given the human touch once more.

We’re seeing a similar trend with retailers like Warby Parker. While it still offers a virtual AR try-on, the main navigation actually emphasizes the home try-on option:

Again, this is another example of ecommerce companies becoming less reliant on automated support to give their customers a better and more confident shopping experience.

Wrap-Up

Ecommerce trends are always evolving. Sometimes it’s due to new technologies. Other times it has to do with what’s happening in the world around us. And sometimes it’s simply to keep up with changing consumer expectations.

Stay tuned as we explore new and emerging ecommerce trends in the coming months…

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4 Predictions for the Web in 2021

The start of the year is always a good time to reassess priorities and consider new approaches, but 2021 is more of a reset than we expected this time last year. 2020 is unlikely to go down in anyone’s autobiography as the best year of their life, but it has done something positive: it’s prepared the ground for rapid change in the next 12 months.

More than any other year in our lifetimes, 2021 is set to be revolutionary, with emerging trends that will last well into the new decade. Here’s what we think you can look forward to around the next corner.

1. The End of Minimalism

Minimalism has been the de facto approach to web design for the last decade because it works.

But design reflects the zeitgeist. Where minimalism once felt clean and fresh, it’s starting to feel dull and uninspired. There have been a few false-starts breaking out of the long-term trend, but thanks to the pandemic, 2021 will be the year minimalism finally folds — at least for a while.

Prior to coronavirus-mandated lockdowns worldwide, there were already signs of a more vibrant, more decorative, more joyful approach to design. Simple typefaces have been replaced with more decorative examples — faces that use ink-traps to fake 3D effects are surprisingly popular.

trends are cyclical, and the wheel always turns

One of the biggest aspects of this blossoming trend is the move away from Material Design-style flat color not just to gradients but to multi-color gradients and even animated gradients. Even Apple, the last bastion of the clean white-box approach, jumped on the gradient bandwagon with its Big Sur branding.

One of the few things COVID-19 hasn’t slowed is the adoption of new web technology, and CSS, in particular, has had some major developments in the last year. CSS Grid is now a practical technology, and our ability to code standards-compliant designs that aren’t dependent on hierarchical boxes is greatly enhanced.

After more than a year of pretty grim news for most people, much of the world will be vaccinated over the next twelve months, and life will rapidly return to normal. The last global crisis on this scale was the 1918 influenza pandemic, and it led directly to the decade known as the Roaring Twenties.

Minimalism was already dipping in popularity — trends are cyclical, and the wheel always turns — but lockdown, or perhaps more precisely the end of lockdown, is the catalyst for significant change.

2. The Decline of WordPress

In Autumn 2020, something entirely unexpected happened: The W3C announced the platform its new web presence would be built on, and WordPress — the previous choice of the web’s steering committee — didn’t even make the list of finalists.

Due to accessibility concerns, the W3C development team opted to migrate away from WordPress to Craft CMS. The decision was met with a mixture of glee and outrage. But whether you agree with the decision or not, it’s hard to see it as anything other than yet another symptom of WordPress’ decline.

WordPress faces a triple threat: there are web builders that do an adequate job for low-end web projects; there are newer rivals like Craft that outperform WordPress as a CMS; there’s a growing interest in alternate approaches, like Jamstack.

So will it all be over for WordPress in 2021? Not even close. There are myriad reasons WordPress will continue to be the choice of designers and developers for years to come. Tens of thousands of professionals worldwide have invested their whole careers in WordPress; there are millions of themes, plugins, templates, and build processes that are tightly woven into the WordPress ecosystem. What’s more, there are millions of sites with substantial content archives powered by WordPress [WebDesignerDepot is one such site].

WordPress reportedly powers approximately 37% of the web, and it will still be the dominant CMS in 2022. But it’s unlikely to grow beyond that 37%, and by 2030 its market share will be in rapid contraction.

2020 was the high-tide mark for WordPress

But for all its faults — and it’s undeniable that WordPress is full of faults — WordPress is the best of the web; it has given a voice to millions of people, launched countless careers, and empowered entrepreneurship worldwide.

2020 was the high-tide mark for WordPress, but it’s not an extinction-level event — even the much-maligned Flash, which was killed dead in a matter of months by the first generation iPhone, limped on until a few weeks ago.

WordPress will have to find a niche and accept a smaller market share; in doing so, it will address the single biggest complaint that anyone has about WordPress: that it’s trying to do too much.

WordPress is one of the great success stories of the web. In a decade, it may have to settle for powering just 10% of the web — a level of failure most of its rivals can only dream of.

3. The Digital Currency Explosion

2021 is undoubtedly the year that cryptocurrency goes mainstream. In 2020 Bitcoin grew by almost 400%; currently valued at around $35k, conservative predictions for a December 2021 valuation are $100k, with five-year predictions as high as $1m. And Bitcoin isn’t the only cryptocurrency; the value of developer-friendly Ether has jumped by more than 50% in the first few weeks of 2021.

In the US, the incoming Biden administration is preparing a multi-trillion dollar relief package, which many believe young Americans will invest in cryptocurrency. Perhaps more importantly, large investment banks are now pumping hundreds of millions in digital currencies. PayPal and Visa are both in the advanced stages of adopting blockchain technology.

The biggest threat to the new digital economy is the volatility of cryptocurrency. You cannot price services in XRP if XRP’s dollar price could crash at any time — as it did a few weeks ago.

And so there are two routes in which this trend will unfold for ecommerce. Either pricing will remain in dollars, and the equivalent price in various cryptocurrencies will be calculated in real-time. Or, transactions will make use of stablecoins like Tether that are tied to the value of the US dollar.

Cryptocurrency is the latest gold-rush, and whether you think it’s the chance of a lifetime or yet another Ponzi scheme, it will become increasingly high-profile in ecommerce throughout 2021.

4. No More Video Calls and also More Video Calls

2020 was the year of Zoom. Its growth from bit-player to overtaking Skype is a material lesson for entrepreneurs that every obstacle is an opportunity.

every obstacle is an opportunity

Over the last year, we’ve discovered two things: meetings are more creative in person, and office costs are significantly reduced when staff work remotely.

There’s going to be a shift in the business landscape this year. Remote working will continue to be normal for years to come as businesses enjoy rent savings. Video calls will still be common for quick update meetings. But expect to travel to physical meeting places periodically for in-depth strategic planning.

Expect to see major cities with deserted office buildings and a rapid expansion of co-working spaces, especially those with meeting spaces — if WeWork can hold on a little longer, there may be light at the end of the tunnel.

As a web professional, you’re in a unique position to thrive in the new business world, even more so if you’re a freelancer. Remember, if you’re working onsite, be mindful of your physical health, and if you’re working remotely, be mindful of your mental health.

What Do You Think?

No one saw 2020 coming. Sometimes world events are outwith our control, and we have to hang on and hope it gets better. It’s been a tough 12 months, and the truth is we’re not through it yet.

But the 2020 coronavirus pandemic is the first pandemic in human history that we’ve had the technology to shorten.

2021 offers the opportunity for enormous change. Will designers look for new, more decorative approaches? Will we replace our technology stack? Will you be billing clients in Ether this year? Will you suffer the misery of a packed evening commute ever again?

 

 

Featured image via Unsplash

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Best Tips to Manage Your Remote Software Development Teams

For a few years now, remote software development has become quite the trend and favorite. Remote software development teams who constitute remote development are usually a team of designers, product engineers, scrum masters, developers, and product managers. All of them work individually over the project cumulatively, resulting in a product’s delivery. 

Generally, in outsourcing, the concerned remote software development company will have dedicated managers overseeing the projects. But post the outbreak of the dreaded pandemic, things are changing. Due to work from home, remote teams operate from different locations. For Business Owners, it is a tedious task to ensure the management of these teams. If you happen to be outsourcing your product development or hiring a remote team to design, develop, and deliver projects, here are a few coolest tips to help you manage them. 

Source de l’article sur DZONE

3 Essential Design Trends, January 2021

Don’t drop the ball on these website design trends for the new year. All of the trends featured here this month are visual in nature – not as many user interface elements as previous months, but all just as stunning and usable.

Here’s what’s trending in design this month.

1. 3D Scenes on White (Light)

Three-dimensional scenes are not just a trend this month but are likely to be one of the biggest website design trends that you see all year.

They offer a great way to show off product imagery, design something with illustrations or animation for visual impact, and provide usability and understandability cues for users.

It’s a versatile technique that can work with real or created images and are also “COVID-friendly,” something designers have had to think a lot about in the past few months. (Appropriate imagery in design is a real concern, as is trying to design projects without the ability to produce traditional photoshoots.)

What’s neat about all of these projects – and plenty of others – is that they root the design in white or light backgrounds. The light effect creates an easier visual mood that’s clean and emphasizes the imagery.

This website design trend solves a lot of those problems and looks good doing it.

Google’s Cloud design uses 3D illustrated animation on a white background with plenty of depth elements. The primary color palette of illustrated objects pulls it all together and guides the eye through each of the callout labels.

The red words on the screen Crystal Pure fit perfectly with the white-on-white 3D imagery of this design. Red accents pull you into different places on the screen, and it all has a clean feel.

Hofmann & Hofmann uses the same concept with a slightly different approach. The background is still light with a realistic feel and 3D objects, but it is a lot less stark and white. The feel is a little warmer and more inviting than a flat white aesthetic.

 

 

2. So Many Stacked Capitals

If you don’t have great artwork or imagery, make your own with typography.

This trend seems like it might be yelling at you just a little, but it still works for the most part — well, as long as you don’t land on too many of these website designs in a row!

What’s interesting about this trend is that many of the designs feature all caps type and serifs. These styles have been making a bit of a comeback, but this use is interesting for many reasons.

The hardest part when using all caps is maintaining readability. That’s why you see some variances in regular, italics, and bold weights, as well as the use of multiple typefaces. The goal is to create a good reading flow with a stunning visual presence.

This trend works best when you have “easy” words on the screen to facilitate scanning. Too many long or complicated letter combinations can get challenging quickly.

Make sure to look for the Easter eggs in each of these projects:

Emotion Agency has tiny “waving” illustrations next to each word (which doubles as the navigation) when you hover over them.

Mill3 Studio has a few animations, from the text flying in and out on load and scroll to subtle movements in the emojis.

Bizarro has this fun little cat video with a tiny warning not to hover over it, but you definitely should.

 

 

3. Empty Places

The final trend in this roundup is a stark reminder of current times. Each of the website design features empty places or locations.

This style of imagery would have been avoided pre-pandemic because tourism locations would want visitors to feel like a part of a bustling environment. Not today. If you travel, chances are you may feel safer or want to be in a more secluded environment.

All of the images and videos from these locations show just that.

Designers are doing this with new stark imagery that stands alone for the design or inserting a few empty place frames into video clips or among images that show more populated times. Even scenes that contain people show very few people and focus on more solitary activities.

Paragon Oak does this by showing a beautifully lit location at night. Note that using a nighttime photo eliminates questions about where the people are or what they are doing. (This is a clever option when showing imagery of an empty place.)

Vienne to Paris shows boats on the water with a beautiful background. While you assume there are people on the water vessels; you don’t see them and get the feeling that everyone is separated in their own “pod,” a pandemic-friendly option for travel.

The Maryculter House shows various images without people – the resort’s location on beautiful grounds; empty, but immaculate rooms, and a few images of a person alone on the grounds. Again, the empty nature of the place feels more appropriately welcome for the time we live in.

 

 

 

Conclusion

One of the things that we’ve seen with design trends in the past year is pandemic-related. The composition of images to the way elements are arranged on the screen influences every aspect of our lives.

While the empty place image and video trend is big now, it may fade post-pandemic. Although, it could still be relevant for quite some time. It will be interesting to see what happens as the year progresses with this trend – will it hold on or fade away?

These trends might continue to hold well into 2021.

Source


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