If you’re a webmaster, you know how quickly a web design can start to look dated. If visitors to your site see an obsolete looking website, it sends a message that you’re out of touch with the latest trends, and if you’re not willing to put the time and effort into making your website look great, they won’t bother to look at it. That’s why you’re always better off having your WordPress themes done professionally, and then making sure that you keep up with what’s hot and what’s gone out of style before your potential customers start rejecting your website out of hand.
Here are a few design trends that are hot in WordPress-based web development right now:
Mobile Ready Themes
|Mobile Ready Website|
More and more people are browsing the web from mobile devices and tablets, and that trend is likely to continue. Many well-established bloggers and niche websites are stubbornly resisting this trend, but smart webmasters and savvy businesses understand that if you don’t have a responsive website, you’re dooming yourself to a smaller and smaller potential pool of visitors with every passing month. If you’re unfamiliar with the term “responsive,” it means that it automatically resizes itself depending on the screen size of the device that it’s being viewed on. WordPress themes have been at the forefront of responsive design, so users are becoming accustomed to seeing them, and in the not-too-distant future you’ll seem like a dinosaur if your site isn’t viewable on a smartphone screen. WordPress estimates that over 60 percent of new WordPress themes are now responsive. According to Pew Research’s Internet Project, over 60 percent of all cell phone users are currently going online on their device, double the amount from just four years prior. Don’t miss out on these potential customers or readers because your site isn’t viewable for them.
Bold Fonts Are Pushing Graphics Into The Background
Not too long ago, almost everyone looked at the Internet through a widescreen monitor. If you came across a website that had big fonts on it, it would seem amateurish, or like a large-print book for the elderly. With today’s responsive layouts, just the opposite is true. Users with smartphones and tablets aren’t going to look at your website at all if it’s entirely written in Times New Roman with 12 pixel heights. It’s annoying for mobile users to continually have to resize text constantly, so larger text and less iconography are becoming standard on more and more websites. According to Smashing Magazine, 16 pixels is now the smallest typeface webmasters should consider. It’s not just mobile users that are becoming used to bigger typefaces, either. Deskbound Web surfers don’t mind being able to sit back in their chair and read your site instead of hunching over to see Arial 10.
Death To The Drop Shadow!
|Drop Shadows are Dead|
It wasn’t too long ago that cutting-edge web designs featured lots of drop shadows, 3D graphics, wallpaper backgrounds that mimic wood grain or book bindings, rounded corners, and lots of gradients. Now you’re much more likely to see perfectly flat looking designs that rely on interesting fonts and layouts but with lots more whitespace and cleaner and simpler feels. This trend reaches its ultimate examples with super-minimalist designs. The days of Flash splash pages are long gone, and designers of text heavy sites and portfolio themes that are supposed to showcase the site owner’s work, not the web designer’s work, are letting the content carry the site, and getting out of the way. If there are a lot images on a site, using images for navigation just adds visual confusion. Even the venerable New York Times realized that its online pages looked too busy, and redesigned accordingly.
Beware Too Many Mouse Clicks
|Stay away from themes using to many mouse clicks to navigate|
If you’re choosing a WordPress theme for your website, remember that an increasing amount of users are going to be viewing your site using touchscreen devices. It’s foolish to continue relying on mouse clicks for all the navigation on your pages. To make it easier for everyone to navigate your site, look for ways to allow touches, swipes, and taps to move around your web pages. Users that are viewing your site using traditional desktop arrangements won’t mind using their mouse to click on links and commands that function well on touchscreen devices, but mobile users will soon get tired of navigating around your site if you ignore them. Look for designs with easy, clear, and big navigation. Users without mouses like image galleries that automatically cycle through their component images, or allow users to navigate with a swipe as well.
Scrolling Beats Clicking
|One Page WordPress Websites|
Since scrolling is much easier on smartphones and tablets than desktops, look for single-page websites to grow in popularity. If you’re got a site with lots and lots of pages that require users to navigate with mouse clicks, you might see users leaving when they reach the bottom of the first page. Hardcore salesmen have used one-page sites for years to keep users from leaving their pages until they’ve reached the end of the sales pitch, and if you want people to keep reading, you should do the same. Just look at the popularity of sites like Pinterest and Tumblr that allow almost infinite scrolling to see where the market is heading.