Articles

12 Tips to Improve Your Web Design Skills in 2021

There are many reasons you might be wanting to improve your design skills this year. Perhaps you have extra time on your hands and want to put it to good use. Or maybe you’re new to web design and finding that there’s a lot you still don’t know how to do. It could also be that you recognize that the web is changing, and your skills could use some refreshing to keep up.

Whatever the reason, there are many ways to level up your web design skills in 2021. Here are 12 ideas to get you started:

Tip 1: Niche Down If You Haven’t Already

Jack-of-all-trades designers might be able to say “yes” to everyone. However, they’re going to be stretched very thin as they attempt to strengthen every skill needed to keep up with demand.

It’s much easier to become a trusted designer and to improve your skills if you have a smaller and more specific skill set to develop.

Just keep in mind that niching down doesn’t necessarily mean focusing on a particular industry. For instance, you might choose to be a UX designer instead of a web designer. Or you might specialize in designing ecommerce websites instead of monetized blogs. Just find something that you’re passionate about and will be good at doing, and zero-in on the skills needed for it.

Tip 2: Play Around in the Sandbox

Local development environments are useful for staging websites, doing redesigns, and testing updates safely away from live sites. But you can also use them for experimenting with new design techniques, trends, templates, plugins, and more.

Local by Flywheel is the one I prefer to use:

Here’s a good exercise to start with:

Take a website you like — something you’ve looked at in awe and couldn’t imagine ever building on your own. Then, put yourself to the test. See if you can recreate it in your sandbox.

Don’t be hard on yourself if you don’t figure it out right away. Consult your resources and give yourself time to make sense of what’s going on and implement it with the available skills and tools.

Tip 3: Redesign One of Your First Projects

There’s always a clear evolution in a designer’s skill set, from the day they begin designing to the present day. And that’s a good thing. If your work doesn’t improve or change with time, then you’re going to have a lot of catching up to do when the stagnation begins to hurt your business.

Want to see how much progress you’ve made so far? Revisit one of your first projects and look at it with fresh eyes. I bet you’ll see a big change in how you design today from how you designed that site then.

Now, ask yourself what you would do differently. And then, go to your sandbox and do the redesign.

Tip 4: Work on a Passion Project

A friend of mine is taking a UX design course and needed some users to run through a prototype he created for the class. He could create anything he wanted, so he designed an app related to his other love: Music.

While he could’ve easily thrown together some carbon copy of Spotify or SoundCloud, he came up with a completely new concept. And it was really impressive, to the point where I urged him to put it into production and see if he could list it in the app stores.

I think it’s when we’re really passionate about something that we’re willing to push past our limits. So, carve out some time to tackle that passion project you’ve been toying around with and see where it takes you.

Tip 5: Share Your Designs on Dribbble and Ask for Feedback

One of the reasons UX designers do user testing is how valuable users’ raw input is. While it would be nice to think that design is a completely subjective matter, that isn’t really the case when usability becomes compromised due to design choices.

Understanding what users like and dislike is an important part of taking your design skills to the next level. And a good way to do that is to share your designs on Dribbble.

Here’s an example of UI8 asking for feedback:

Tip 6: Create a Design Toolbox

I’m a huge fan of automation and shortcuts powering things behind the scenes in business.

After all, one of the reasons you become a web designer is so you can design, right? When you’re bogged down with administrative and logistical tasks, that’s time spent away from doing what you enjoy.

One way in which you can streamline your backend processes is by putting together a design toolbox. Your preferred CMS. Flexible templates or apps you use from project to project. Website testing tools. And so on.

As you do this, it’ll force you to examine how you build websites. Are you really working as efficiently as possible? Are there newer apps or systems that’ll help you design better sites? And as you improve your design toolbox, you’ll improve your design skills.

Tip 7: Subscribe to Your Favorite Blogs

I have a hard time recommending this one, only because I’m reluctant to sign up for yet another newsletter. That said, I do see the value in subscribing to some blog newsletters as I don’t always remember to revisit their websites and check out the latest content.

What I’d suggest you do is pick one or two design blogs that have a good variety of content and publish regularly. And then pick one small business or freelance blog.

WebdesignerDepot, of course, is a good one to start with as it comes at a good frequency, recommends great reads from all around the web, and is fluff-free:

I’d also recommend signing up for one that’s focused on your niche as well as one for business.

As a freelancer, I’d vote for the Freelancers’ Union newsletter. There’s always something timely and useful in there.

Tip 8: Listen to a Podcast

I just adopted a second dog, so I’ve spent a lot more time on walks while house-training her. At first, I was stressed about it because it was time spent away from work. However, I started to fill that time with podcasts and found that it helped me work better for the rest of the day.

One reason is that I’ve been listening to work-related podcasts, which are always chock full of helpful tips. Another reason is that it gives my eyes a rest from looking at the screen so that when I come back 15 or so minutes later, I feel refreshed and ready to go.

Rebekah Carter has a good set of web design podcast recommendations to get you started.

Tip 9: Take a Free Online Design Course

There’s an overabundance of information online. If you want to brush up on CSS, there are hundreds of YouTube courses that cover it. If you want to learn how to use a new WordPress plugin, you’ll find dozens of great tutorials across various online course platforms, YouTube channels, and even people’s blogs.

There’s no need to go back to school to become a better designer. Here are five places where you’re bound to find free courses for web designers.

Tip 10: Read a Book on Design Principles or Theory

It’s easy to lose sight of design principles when your clients are clamoring for a website that will make them a lot of money, get them a lot of readers, and so on. Sure, you can design a UI and UX that works, but do you remember why the design choices you made are effective?

Choose a book — just one to start — that’ll help you reconnect with the roots of good web design. Not only will you get a good refresher on web design principles or design theory, but you might learn something brand new.

Here are some of my favorite books for web designers:

Tip 11: Find Your People

Now more than ever, finding a community of like-minded web designers, developers, or freelancers is important. It’s not just about having a group of people to vent to when clients drive you nuts (though that’s great, too).

It’s about finding a group that brings something new to the table and enriches your understanding of web design and what it means to be a web designer.

If you’re on Facebook or LinkedIn, start there. There are tons of web design and freelance groups that have productive discussions every day. If you prefer to meet up with local designers and developers, check out Meetup.

You may be surprised by how many groups there are and the kinds of meetups they have planned.

Tip 12: Attend a Virtual Conference

Did any of you attend a design conference last year? I did. I virtually attended Adobe MAX — from the comfort of my home, in my pajamas, for three days.

I scheduled my assignments around the sessions I wanted to attend and didn’t have to pick one over the other (i.e., “Do I make money or do I learn something new?”).

Some of the sessions showed us how to do more with Adobe’s tools, while some of them featured design and business leaders who shared personal insights on how to work more effectively. It was a great way to shake up my normal routine and to get a ton of information about the future of web design in a short period of time.

Which of These Tips Will You Use to Improve Your Design Skills?

Like I said before, there’s a lot you can do to improve your design skills. Just be careful not to overdo it.

Pick one or two things on this list to start with. If you have more time in your schedule and you’re excited about what you’ve learned so far, add a couple more.

Just take it slowly. Your brain will only be able to absorb so much at once. Plus, the last thing you want is to burn yourself out on skills training and not have the energy to complete your work.

 

Featured image via Unsplash.

Source

The post 12 Tips to Improve Your Web Design Skills in 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

Popular Design News of the Week: February 15, 2021 – February 21, 2021

Everyday design fans submit incredible industry stories to our sister-site, Webdesigner News. Our colleagues sift through it, selecting the very best stories from the design, UX, tech, and development worlds and posting them live on the site.

The best way to keep up with the most important stories for web professionals is to subscribe to Webdesigner News or check out the site regularly. However, in case you missed a day this week, here’s a handy compilation of the top curated stories from the last seven days. Enjoy!

The New Trello – Going Beyond the Board

Flameshot – Superb Screenshot Tool

GitHub Surf – Open repositories in a VSCode Environment

The Never-Ending Job of Selling Design Systems

The Secret Ingredients to Design

What Saul Bass Can Teach Us About Web Design

2021 Planner for Notion – A Smart Notion Workspace

Ideas for CSS Button Hover Animations

Ray.so – Create Beautiful Images of Your Code

Variable Font Reveals The Full Horror of The Climate Crisis

Design Systems For Figma: Year In The Life Of A Material Design Advocate

Interface Market – An Extensive Collection of App UI Kits

DogeHouse – Open-Source Audio Chat on the Web

Interaction Design is More Than Just User Flows and Clicks

Design Trends 2021

Straw.Page – Extremely Simple Website Builder

The Impact of Web Design and SEO Conversion Rates

Powerful Microinteractions to Improve Your Prototypes

What’s New in Ecommerce, February 2021

Colortopia – The Easiest Way to Find Colors

5 Simple Design Patterns to Improve Your Website

TextBuddy for macOS – A Swiss Army Knife for Plain Text

Upcoming Interesting JavaScript ES2021 (ES12) Features

WordPress 5.7: Big ol’ jQuery Update

JavaScript reducer – A Simple, Yet Powerful Array Method

Source

The post Popular Design News of the Week: February 15, 2021 – February 21, 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

What’s New in Ecommerce, February 2021

There are some interesting shake-ups on the horizon for ecommerce: Experiential shopping, Virt-ical worlds, Au naturale models.

We’re starting to see signs of them already — many of them spurred on thanks to the events of 2020. Below, we’re going to explore what’s going on with these new ecommerce trends and technologies and take a look at a bunch of sites that are setting really cool examples for each.

1. Experiential Shopping

With many stores, either closed to in-person shopping during the pandemic or their capacities severely limited, online shopping and BOPIS became much more attractive options for consumers.

That said, buying something like a pair of jeans or a new pair of glasses is much different than the pack of toilet paper someone’s bought for years. There are just some things you have to try to know if you’re going to like it and make sure it fits.

Augmented reality and other immersive shopping tools are bringing those “try-on” capabilities to people’s homes.

There are a number of technologies built specifically for this purpose:

Obsess is a particularly noteworthy one. It’s an ecommerce platform that enables retailers to build virtually immersive shopping experiences. Charlotte Tilbury is one such retailer that is taking advantage of it.

Obsess, the augmented reality and immersive shopping experience platform

At the end of 2020, Obsess announced that it had received $3.4 million in seed funding, so expect to see more Obsess-powered ecommerce sites and apps.

ByondXR is another platform that empowers brands to design immersive experiences for online shoppers:

ByondXR helps brands create experiential shopping

Retailers like Lancome, Procter & Gamble, and Calvin Klein have used ByondXR’s immersive commerce technology.

Another option is offered by Matterport:

Matterport's virtual shopping experiences and 3D store mapping tech

This technology is interesting as you’re not just creating a virtual store. You can also design a 3D model of a brick-and-mortar shop that in-store shoppers can use to get in and out quickly.

2. Virt-ical Worlds

There’s a new trend brewing, and we see it most commonly on websites for fresh and youthful brands. I wouldn’t say it’s nostalgic design, per se, though there are certainly some elements reminiscent of the bold, in-your-face style of the web in the late ‘90s and early ‘00s.

No, I think what we see here is a creative reimagining of our world.

With so many people having spent time in their homes and with their faces glued to screens, there’s been a blurring between our VIRTual and physICAL worlds. This new web design trend is one I’m going to call the Virt-ical World. While parts of these sites look like the websites we’ve designed in years past, there are motion, color, and sizing elements that feel more like a trippy virtual simulation.

Let’s look at some examples.

Starface is a company that creates acne-fighting products.

Starface's in-your-face website design

This is one of the more experimental designs in this set of examples. Still, it’s one that shows us how far the boundaries can be pushed without totally compromising the online shopping experience.

Billie is another company having fun with this trend. I’d say this is on the opposite end of the spectrum.

Billie has a fun, candy-colored website design

For the most part, this ecommerce site looks similar to other small retailer sites. However, the fun, candy-colored palette, the bobbing products, and the color shifts add a somewhat surreal element to the design.

Catching THEO is another ecommerce brand playing around with this Virt-ical World.

Catching THEO mixes nostalgia and modern design

See what I mean by this style feeling somewhat nostalgic? Thankfully, this site commits to today’s good, clean, responsive design while only using some of the more fun and quirky elements from the past.

Au Naturale Models

When I talk about au naturale models, I’m really referring to the makeup-less faces, relaxed hairstyles, and casual apparel that we’re seeing ecommerce models don these days.

I think it’s safe to say we have the pandemic to thank for this. And it’s not just because many of us took a more casual approach to getting dressed during the week. It’s also because the pandemic wiped away the glitz and glamour from many of our lives.

I don’t know about you, but it was kind of nice seeing fewer Instagram influencers flaunting their luxurious lifestyles and more real people rocking their matching pajama sets. I think brands have sensed this change in mood over the last year, and they’re now putting forward their own simple and casual styles for us to connect to.

There are tons of ecommerce websites we’re seeing this on in 2021.

Here’s Dove’s homepage, where they specifically call attention to the lack of digital distortion in the photo:

Thinx also uses more natural and realistic-looking models to show off its undergarment products:

Madison Reed takes a unique approach with this trend:

Madison Reed shows off some of the real faces of its customers

While the hair color brand does a great job of using diverse models around the site, it also has this scrolling bar showing off its customers’ very natural and real faces.

Wrap-Up

It feels like ecommerce trends and technologies are changing at a rapid pace these days. To help you stay on top of what’s new in ecommerce, stay tuned to this blog for more interesting news and changes to the landscape.

Source

The post What’s New in Ecommerce, February 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

Exclusive Infographic: WordPress by the Numbers

What is WordPress? It began as a simple CMS for building a blog, and it has evolved over the years into a complex ecosystem of tools and resources.

WordPress can power ecommerce sites, interactive courses, art projects, and of course, it powers one or two blogs. Depending on who you ask, WordPress powers between 35% and 40% of the entire web; that makes it one of the most important technologies of the web era. Best of all, it’s free and open-source, so if you’re new to web design, WordPress is a great place to get started.

We’ve put together this simple infographic with all the facts you need to know about WordPress in 2021.

Source

The post Exclusive Infographic: WordPress by the Numbers first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

5 Web Design Trends and Ideas for 2021

One of the few bright spots in 2020 has been the creativity companies and individuals alike have exhibited in dealing with what, at times, seemed to be overwhelming problems.

The world of web design was no different. Designers and agencies had to adapt and implement new color schemes or design new shopping experiences, which made some of the previous design trends not fit for the current design problems.

We’ll take a look at these newest design trends and the rationale behind them. As we do so, we’ll also take a look at some of BeTheme’s 600+ pre-built sites that have already put them to good use.

1. Comforting Color Palettes Lighten the Load

In years past, bolder color schemes were one of the hallmarks of web design trends. Their purpose was to quickly engage a visitor and prompt him or her to respond emotionally.

Given all the drama and turmoil we were subjected to through most of 2020, we’ve come to welcome the use of toned-down colors in marketing instead of the bolder, brasher, and more “in-your-face” color schemes. 

Bellroy’s website puts toned-down colors to good use. This company’s product line of wallets, bags, and the like, are designed to keep people’s belongings organized, safe, and secure. A wild color scheme simply wouldn’t be fitting.

How, then, are brightly-colored products dealt with? Thanks to judicious uses of white space and background photos, this website still emphasizes a toned-down color palette.

The BeSpa pre-built website is another example of a color scheme that almost immediately puts the mind at ease.

Calm and soothing? Yes.

Boring? Definitely not.

Comfort and security are the emotional drivers in this example.

2. Seamlessly Intermingle and Balance Physical and Digital Imagery

People confined to their homes because of Covid-based restrictions spent many more hours looking at their screens in 2020. Online programming began to take on the appearance of a reality show that blurred the boundaries between the real and the digital.

Whereas web designers tended in the past to rely on either photos or illustrations in their designs, these same designers have started to integrate these blurring effects into their designs, with results that range from amusing and quirky to highly informative.

Check out this example from fashion designer Constance Burke

It’s not every day you see real models wearing hand-drawn fashion sketches. But it’s just one example of how the physical can be blended with the digital.

The BeSki pre-built site does the same blending of the two, but in a totally different way:

The sections’ designs switch from predominantly physical to largely digital and back again, an excellent approach that provides a maximum amount of useful information.

It’s also worth noting how snowbanks are effectively used to seamlessly transition from one section to the next.

3. Create Well-Organized and Helpful Shopping Experiences

More people spending more time at home has created a surge in online shopping. As a result, many online store owners are now feeling the effects of increased competition.

Consumers look for brands they believe they can trust. At the same time, they want their online shopping experiences to be as quick and painless as possible. They look for (and expect) quick and effective product search capabilities, helpful and effective product displays, one-page product descriptions, and the like.

Walgreen’s product page design is especially well-suited for 2021 ecommerce shoppers: 

Everything shoppers usually need to know is presented above-the-fold. They can easily proceed to the next step or scroll down for reviews or additional product specifications. 

BePestControl’s pre-built website uses a similar product design approach: 

In this example, the main selling points are up-front and are kept short and sweet. The shopper can either hit the ‘Add to Cart’ button or look below the button for additional information.

In both examples, a visitor doesn’t have to mull over what step to take next since one of the design objectives is to make the shopping experience as easy and as satisfying as possible.

4. Take Advantage of the Benefits of User-Controlled Video Content

Once upon a time, video content was “the thing” to incorporate in a website. Hero background videos proved to be particularly engaging, and “how-to” videos presented much more useful information than illustrations or blocks of text could.

On the other hand, Auto-play videos, those that started on their own, all too often had a tendency to irritate rather than inform, especially when their content didn’t address a visitor’s immediate concern.

Thanks to Zoom and similar video platforms that came into widespread use in 2020 and to website designs that include video “Play” buttons, users have become much more comfortable with the medium. As an example, Shoppers have been given total control over if or when they want to view a given video. 

This is the design approach Payoneer has taken: 

The white “Pay” button is impossible to miss, and while it is designed to encourage a visitor to watch a testimonial, doing so is completely optional.

The BeOptics pre-built website cleverly slips in a video play option as well: 

In this example, when visitors hover over the “See More” button, it lets them know that they have the option to watch the video if they want to learn more.

5. Trust Builders Should be Non-Negotiable Web Design Elements

There are various ways in which products are organized or showcased in brick and mortar businesses to instill trust. Helpful and friendly staff also contribute to instilling trust.

Some of these trust-builders are easily incorporated into eCommerce designs. Others, though more difficult to fit in, can usually be satisfactorily addressed.

Digital trust builders can include.

  • Logos (familiar, whimsical, innovative, engaging)
  • Portfolios and/or product pages
  • Customer reviews, product ratings, and client testimonials
  • Case studies and product or price comparisons
  • Safety and security seals, e.g., Better Business Bureau, PayPal checkout
  • Charts, graphs, counters, and other data visualization techniques
  • Proof of social, charitable, or community-related actions and contributions

Put, trust-building content will beat hard-sell techniques every time, especially if you would like your customer base to include referred and repeat customers.

Omaze, for example, gives people entries for prizes based on their donations while at the same time highlighting the good things it and its donors have brought about.

To help build trust, the site devotes space to highlighting publications that have featured Omaze and the work it has done and is doing.

Plus, it puts data visualization and non-profit testimonials into play to give visitors an added insight into what is going on behind the scenes: 

As you can see, it doesn’t have to be difficult to incorporate genuine trust-building content into your website designs.

BePortfolio is a great example of how you might go about doing this for a portfolio site, whether it’s your own or a site for a client:

The home page alone has plenty of space for including trust-building content:

  • A satisfied customer counter
  • Product usage case studies and testimonial
  • Portfolio highlights
  • Client and partnership logos

And it can only get better as a visitor moves through the site, but only if you’ve chosen to make that happen.

Have You Started to Take These New Web Design Trends to Heart?

We’re not suggesting that you throw the baby out with the bathwater, but some trends will need to be discarded to enable you to adjust to a new normal. Other 2020 design trends, like minimalism and headline topography, are likely to remain popular for years to come.

New trends that incorporate calming color palettes, image blending, more efficient eCommerce UX designs, user-controlled video, and trust-building elements should give your customers the feeling of comfort and security they will be seeking in 2021.

If you want to implement some or all of these new trends in your 2021 website designs, BeTheme’s 600+ pre-built sites make doing so an easy task.

 

[– This is a sponsored post on behalf of BeTheme –]

Source

The post 5 Web Design Trends and Ideas for 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

Should You Become a Web Designer in 2021?

If you’re here, then you’re thinking about becoming a web designer and wondering if it’s a smart move.

Honestly, it’s not uncommon to be plagued by doubts and what-ifs when making a big career change, and that’s especially so right now, what with all the uncertainty we’ve faced over the last year.

Here’s some good news: It’s never a bad time to become a web designer, which makes 2021 the perfect time to turn your passion into a career! Here are 8 reasons why:

1. People Are Spending More Time Online Than Ever Before

DoubleVerify surveyed consumers’ digital consumption habits in 2020, and guess what it found? The amount of time people spend online has doubled since the pandemic began. Before 2020, consumers worldwide were spending an average of 3 hours and 17 minutes online every day. Now? The average is 6 hours and 59 minutes.

Needless to say, web designers are in high demand as businesses rush to get in front of these consumers.

2. There’s a Big Freelance Boom Right Now

An Upwork study at the end of 2020 reveals that freelancing grew by 22% (about 2 million workers) since 2019. This now-popular career move is a great option for everyone — from university graduates entering the workforce for the first time to anyone who’s been recently laid off. Heck, if you’re just plain unhappy with the course of your career and want to shake things up, freelancing could be the breath of fresh you need.

3. It’s a Future-Proof Field

In these uncertain times, you’re right to be cautious about jumping into something new. But web design is a career that’ll be around for a long, long time. It’s not just the fact that we’ll always need people to build websites that makes this field future-proof. You could build… Websites. Mobile apps. Web apps. Progressive web apps. You could specialize in… Graphic design. UX design. Web development. You could work for yourself. Build your own agency. Go work for someone else.

There’s a ton of flexibility in how you make a living as a designer. So if your interests change or your industry is impacted, that’s fine. Just pivot!

4. You Can Do It From Anywhere, Anytime

When people are nervous about traveling or living in densely packed cities, that’s not something that should worry you as a web designer. One of the benefits of being a web designer is that you can do it from anywhere you want and on your own schedule.

This is especially nice for anyone who has a family and needs a more effective way of managing it all at once, even when the kids aren’t in school or jobs out in the physical world are diminishing.

5. You’re in the Driver’s Seat

Let’s face it, it can be really stressful working for a company where you have little to no say about what goes on, how it gets done, and how much money you make for all your efforts. This is one of the reasons why freelancing is such an attractive option for many. You get to decide which content management system you build websites with. You get to decide who you work with. You get to set your hours of availability. You make the rules. And you know what? You can change them at any time. It’s all on you.

6. It Can Be a Lot of Fun

There’s some fascinating stuff coming down the line in digital design. For instance, augmented and virtual realities are really starting to pick up speed as ecommerce companies need a better way to allow customers to window-shop and try stuff on digitally.

AI is also bringing a lot of changes to the space. Not only can machine learning and language processing improve the way companies do business online, but they can also improve the way web designers work, too.

7. It Can Also Be Really Rewarding

Because you control your career as a web designer, you get to decide who you build websites for. So, what kinds of causes are you passionate about? Is there an industry you have close ties to and want to give back? This isn’t about working for free. This is about offering your professional design services to people you’re invested in and causes that get you excited.

Not only will it be easier to work for clients like these, but you’ll enjoy it more, too.

8. You Don’t Need to Go to School to Become a Designer

This is a common question for people wanting to leap into web design. While you should have some basic knowledge and skills when you start, you don’t need a degree in design or development to start making money.

One of the beautiful things about becoming a web designer is that you can learn as you go. Here are 5 free courses that’ll help you get to the next level. For instance, you can start as a freelancer, building websites from pre-made templates or themes. As you get more experience and pick up advanced design and coding skills, you can then branch out into specialized fields or areas of expertise.

Ready to Become a Web Designer?

There are many, many reasons to leap into web design in 2021. But are you ready? Before you get started, make sure you have a trusted set of resources to help you with the business side of becoming a web designer. Webdesigner Depot is a good place to start. You’ll learn things like:

And much, much more. When you’re ready, check out this 3-part business branding series where you’ll learn how to kick off your new web design business the right way.

 

Featured image via Unsplash.

Source

The post Should You Become a Web Designer in 2021? first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

Popular Design News of the Week: January 18, 2021 – January 24, 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.

UI Design Trends for 2021

 

10 White Label Tools for Web Designers

 

12 Content Marketing Trends to Keep an Eye in 2021

 

We Can do Better than Signal

 

I Wasted $40k on a Fantastic Startup Idea

 

Mnm – An Open Source Project to Replace Email and SMTP

 

Shuffle – An Online Editor for Busy Developers

 

New in Chrome 88: Aspect-ratio

 

Everything About React Server Components

 

8 Examples of Icon-Based Navigation, Enhanced with CSS and JavaScript

 

Amazing Free UI Illustrations and How to Use Them

 

Is it Time We Start Designing for Deviant Users?

 

7 B2B Web Design Tips to Craft an Eye-Catching Website

 

Legendaria Font

 

16 Things not to do While Designing Dashboards

 

How to Train your Design Dragon

 

Enterprise UX is Amazing

 

7 Visual Design Lessons from Dmitry Novikoff Based on Big Sur Icons

 

DIY UX Audit – Uncover 90% of the Usability Issues on your Website

 

Vector Pattern Generator – Customize Seamless Patterns for the Web

 

The Year in Illustration 2020

 

Design Trends Predictions for 2021

 

Twenty Twenty-One Theme Review: Well-Designed & Cutting-Edge

 

9 Best Code Editors for Editing WordPress Files

 

The State of Design in 2021

 

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

Source

The post Popular Design News of the Week: January 18, 2021 – January 24, 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

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.

Source

The post Popular Design News of the Week: January 11, 2021 – January 17, 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

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…

Source

The post What’s New in Ecommerce, January 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot

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

Source

The post 4 Predictions for the Web in 2021 first appeared on Webdesigner Depot.


Source de l’article sur Webdesignerdepot