From a business perspective – what trends for web design in 2017 matter?
- Contact form on every page
- Constant strong call to action on header
- Overloading the design with ‘trust factors’ like organization badges and testimonials
- Having a short video to explain or show your key value proposition
- Highly attractive design with white space – consider using meaningful transitions, overlapping grid systems, and split content to draw out dichotomies
1. Contact form on every page
Don’t get it twisted – if your website is a lead generation website, you don’t want to make the contact form hard find. If you can include it on every page, all the better.
It may seem like a simple trick, but the best ‘tricks’ are.
2. Ever-present CTA: Constant strong call to action button
You don’t have to have the contact form to nudge people to contact you, to get a demo, to get a quote, or whatever the main action is you want to drive the customer to take. Instead, you can include a big button on the top right all the time. When they scroll, leave the call to action button at the top of the screen with a ‘sticky’ header that follows visitors.
3. Overloading the design with trust factors like organizational badges and testimonials
I’m sticking with only the most effective things I know that some of my audience may not have been as aware of before. Trust factors are everything in web design – they are almost all I think about besides clean, modern, and aesthetically pleasing visual design.
The only way you get people to take action (big Call to Action buttons, and Buy Now buttons, etc.) is surrounding them with these elements that explain and nudge them to continue – because TRUST is absolutely crucial in any transaction.
Do you have free returns? Do you have fast and free shipping? Do you have a guarantee? Showcase these things.
Part of a local trade group? Better Business Bureau? Have an SSL Certificate on your online store?
Add visual representation for these items and consider branding them to the style of your website to increase the trust even more.
One of the biggest items in the category of trust factors that most quality businesses have is online reviews and testimonials. I highly suggest showcasing these in a very visual prominent way on your site. If it’s testimonials, ideally you have photos of the customers themselves to lend even more credibility to what they said about your product or service.
4. Having a video to showcase your key value proposition
When I first designed DeneenPottery.com, I worked with what the client had – images of their high-quality mugs and a video that was hidden away a bit in the design. We drew out this video by taking a little highlight of it showing undeniably the handmade nature of their mugs and giving people a taste of their process:
5. Highly attractive design with white space – consider using meaningful transitions, overlapping grid systems, and split content to draw out dichotomies
White space is that delightful element of design that seems to make everything feel more ‘high-end':
In this website, I decided to utilize the natural openness of the photography to create a feeling of roomy decadence.
Apple understands whitespace. It doesn’t mean the background is white – it just means open space around the main subject matter in the design.
Here’s a really tall example of Apple’s use of whitespace in their site:
Google has used meaningful transitions in their ‘Material Design’ for years – but more and more web designers are getting into using this to create an effective way to give more context to the action the user is taking on the site. Check out the hover state on the button below, the spreading out of color as the user clicks the button, and then the way the modal/popup window grows after it’s clicked:
Using material design in this website allowed me to make the site feel very interactive and very modern. It also helps that by using conventions from Material Design you also subtly associate yourself with the kind of user experience on Google.com and Google’s many products – since they all match and use these conventions.
Overlapping Grid Systems
Boxes in web design are traditional side by side, one on top of the other, but many designers are utilizing a very 2017 style called overlapping grid system, or an offset grid system. This style juxtaposes boxes and photos on top of each other for a more organic, free flowing effect.
Split color or split imagery to draw out a dichotomy
A dichotomy is the separation of two things – like ‘hot and cold’ or ‘good and evil.’ By making two sides of a website super different from each other, it grabs a visitor’s attention.
You can use this to draw out the emotional elements of being opposed, or the two sides of the brain ’emotional and logical,’ ‘creative and systems-oriented,’ or just use it to create some visual appeal like this design by Mateusz Koziorowski.
Whatever you do – don’t jump into web design trends willy nilly
Be sure to consider your business goals first and foremost. Visual design trends are nothing without considering what it will do as far as moving the needle with your revenue.
Thank you for reading all about “2017 Web Design Trends for Small Businesses” and as always let me know if I can help you in any way with your digital marketing goals. I offer web design and WordPress development, search engine optimization, and social media marketing services!