Art evolves. It does so because people and society change and thus an artist’s eye will begin to perceive this and try to represent it in their art. A famous example of this is how the invention of the camera paved the way for the impressionist movement of the late 19th century. Without a need to capture the world exactly—because a camera could now do this—the artists were free to interpret what they saw, rather than record it.

Just as home decorators and car designers are seeking looks to appeal to their buyers, so too are website designers making websites more enjoyable and appealing. When web surfers are making split-second decisions whether to stay on your website or leave it, a great design can make a huge difference in your conversions.

DARK MODE

Dark backgrounds make design elements stand out more, creating a higher contrast ratio with the use of other colors, but still improving visual ergonomics by reducing eye strain.

Dark mode website designs not only look ultra-modern, but also they’re easy on the eyes and make colors and design elements pop.

IMMERSIVE 3D ELEMENTS

Expect to see more use of 3D technology in graphic design and interaction design. Designers are armed to their teeth with vast options for creative “roaming” in 3D space. They step up the interaction game by including all of our senses in the experience.

3D visuals have always delighted people; what held this trend back was technology and the (previously) expensive price tag. The technology is now in a place where you can design in 3D without NASA-tier equipment, opening the gates to more and more designers.

WHITE SPACE

Modern website design is heading back to minimalism with a tide of purposeful white space, much like in print magazines.

Designers are steering away from full-bleed images and parallax designs in favor of “framing” the content in a wall of white space. When something is framed, it gives the image more of a position on the website so that websites tend to stand out.

Full-bleed layouts have been trending in website design for quite some time. Now, designers are gravitating toward solid structures. They are playing with different ways to use lots of white space to give their designs more structure and make use of clean framing to give their designs stability and a canvas to jump from.

The breathing room white space provides allows viewers’ eyes to rest. It also aids comprehension by defining relationships between page elements.

A MINIMALIST NAVIGATION

Website content will soon be more video with voice script and less text, heading toward precision over description. Overall, website design is going to be more simplistic to facilitate easier navigation.

With the rise of wearable devices like smartwatches, website design in general is thinking smaller. The area most affected by this is navigation, the glue that holds a website together. Over the last few years, navigation has been getting simpler and simpler to accommodate extremely small devices and even smaller attention spans.

Extremely minimalist navigation takes away much of the difficulty in usability. The less a user has to think about moving around, the more time they spend immersed on the website, actually moving around instead of wondering how.

FULL-PAGE HEADERS

Full-page headers are the way to go for modern website design. Designers can implement header variations, but a popular set-up involves adding key text or call-to-action buttons to the left of the header with eye-catching images on the right.

This is because readers tend to focus most of their attention on the top-left of the page.

PLAYFUL CURSORS

Modern websites often feature cursors that make viewing pages a new experience.

Implementing playful cursors on your website in 2020 can be as simple as changing the cursor shape or as complex as coding cursor-triggered animations. Either way, your visitors will have a great time engaging with unique cursors.

Because of the playfulness of the animation, users easily spend a couple of minutes floating their cursor over the navigation menu.

Your cursor doesn’t have to be as complex as this one, but adding a unique element to your cursor is sure to add some spice to your website.

DYNAMIC SCROLLING

One version of dynamic scrolling sets different scrolling speeds for your website’s foreground and background to give visitors a 3D effect.

Background video can also incorporate into dynamic scrolling, where the video plays only when users scroll — and with dynamic scrolling, you can trigger animations and make your images appear like magic.

INCREASED FOCUS ON USER EXPERIENCE (UX)

One version of dynamic scrolling sets different scrolling speeds for your website’s foreground and background to give visitors a 3D effect.

Background video can also incorporate into dynamic scrolling, where the video plays only when users scroll — and with dynamic scrolling, you can trigger animations and make your images appear like magic.

EMOTIONAL DESIGN

Design is communication. When we think about communication, we naturally think about delivering and receiving information. For a long time, product teams were focused on creating great usability. But today, the focus has shifted toward great usability and the right emotional impact. Companies are quickly moving from neutral design toward a design that has an emotional impact.

DATA VISUALIZATION

Humans are visual creatures. For many people, it’s easier to comprehend the information when it’s provided visually, rather than in text. Data visualization is quickly becoming an essential tool for creating visually engaging stories. The stories, like the one you see below, can captivate your audience and make them want to learn more about your brand.

A strong part of data visualization is visual storytelling and data art and illustration. For a website to have a successful modern design in 2020, all of its elements need to translate flawlessly to both desktop and mobile. Mobile-responsive animation and videography will become increasingly important for modern website design.

With offices in Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles, Ca., New Target provides digital strategy, digital marketing, web design, web development, branding, website hosting, and creative services for prominent nonprofits, companies, and government.