Guide To Web Design In 2022

Our guide to web design in 2022

Guide To Web Design In 2022

Hoping to discover what web design trends are emerging in 2022, and which trends that become popular in 2021 are continuing to evolve in new and exciting ways?

Daring to experiment with bold and cutting-edge designs can give you a head start in the constant virtual battle for users’ attention!

Internet users take as little as 50 milliseconds to decide how good a website is, research discovered as far back as 2006. In case that number is a little too abstract to relate to, here’s a useful comparison — it takes the average person anywhere from 100 to 150 milliseconds to blink. 

What on Earth can users assess well enough to form a first impression that lasts — even during countless subsequent visitors to the same site — within that ridiculously short amount of time?

User experience might play a great role in determining visitors’ overall satisfaction with a website, but of course, that all-important initial judgment is formed on the basis of aspects of visual design that are able to penetrate a user’s subconscious minds.

Within significantly less than half a second, users are able to say whether or not they found web design “aesthetic”, “clean”, “expressive”, “fascinating”, and “creative”. They won’t have examined the artistic and functional merits of the sites they’re looking at in that time, of course, but they do know how a website makes them feel.

While some might be shocked by the fact that modern internet users decide whether they like a website or not with such astonishing speed, web designers already know it.

Here’s the thing. The underlying aspects of web design that speak to a user’s psychology, like colour theory and mood, don’t change — but the design trends that appeal to modern netizens’ sense of beauty and enjoyment do!

Websites that present an outdated aesthetic to the world are sending a powerful message, one that screams “we’re no longer relevant, and we’ve lost all credibility”. That’s not something anyone wants.

It’s crucial to keep up with the latest web design trends, then! To make websites that modern users will enjoy, and keep coming back to, it’s crucial to know what’s hot in 2022.

On the upside, creativity and individuality are some of the overarching web design trends this year. That means our Warrington web designers have more artistic freedom than ever, while business websites are able to influence their users’ every move with the use of web design that makes a deep psychological impact.

2022’s Most Exciting Visual Design Trends

We’re seeing plenty of new web design trends going into the new year, but of course, most web designers — and businesses that are planning to invest in bespoke websites, too — will be particularly thrilled about the visual design principles just coming into vogue. If you want a guide to web design in 2022, this is the start. You’ll definitely want to incorporate at least one of these visual trends into any website!

Brave, Bold, Colours

In keeping with the general trends towards more playful web design, bold colours are on the rise! Many people, web designers included, have grown tired of the muted and cool colour palettes that have become the norm in recent times — and in 2022, they’re fighting back.

Bold colour palettes mix extraordinarily well with another novelty in web design, namely minimalism and the purposeful use of empty space.

On a related note, colour theory will continue to become more important in 2022, as web designers help brands invoke the moods and emotions they’re aiming for.

Oversized and Creative Typography

Oversized and custom-created fonts are going to dominate more and more homepages as it’s out with the old, and in with the new. When lettering is big and artistic enough, it’s no longer merely text — it becomes a key part of visual design. You’ll even see text-only websites that entirely rely on creative typography.

Delightful Micro Animations

Refreshing and unexpected design elements are a great tool to capture visitors’ attention. Although heavily photograph-centered web pages are fast going out of style, illustrations and interactive elements are becoming more important than ever.

It’s cool to see, then, that many web designers are beginning to incorporate micro animations into the websites they craft. Some of the micro animations you’ll already be able to spot all around the web purely add visual appeal. Others, though, are interactive. Forms, quizzes, and buttons can all feature playful or stylish animated elements.

Unusual cursors are another emerging trend in 2022. Unlike the kitsch ‘90s cursors you might remember, these new cursors are sophisticated and artistic.

Minimalism

Sometimes, keeping it simple is the best way to convey a core message. Web designers are taking on the challenge of creating impactful websites that feature no more than a few key design elements in 2022, and some of the results are stunning.

Ehm, Maximalism?

The internet is personal in 2022, for business and customers alike. If you’re confused by the fact that many of 2022’s web design trends are wildly divergent, that’s because the web design is, more than ever before, a “WYSIWYG” expression of individuality.

That’s right — not even financial institutions will all have muted grey and blue colour palettes and “dependable” (boring) layouts any more.

So, what can you expect to see more of? What might you want to experiment with as a web designer? There’s to much to list, really, but some of the most exciting trends include:

  • “Vintage” or “retro” websites. From fashion brands to soft drink companies, increasing numbers of websites will be wowing their visitors with visual design reminiscent of earlier periods. From the Industrial Revolution all the way to the 1990s, web designers will be playing around with different eras this year.
  • Complex gradients are going to be all the rage as well in 2022, and many of them will incorporate refreshing dynamic elements. Parallax scrolling has already been impressing users in 2021, and this year, you can expect complex gradients to become an integral part of the new scrolling experience.
  • Collages that artfully capture a brand’s essence are also on the rise — and they heavily play with texture.
  • Have you ever heard that plants are good for your mental health, and that even just having an artificial plant in your office can boost your mood? In 2022, organic shapes are one of the top web design trends, and it’s easy to see why. These designs, inspired by the natural world, inspire and foster growth in visitors.
  • Glassmorphism is another continuing rage this year. You’ll see, and perhaps make, grainy and frosty elements inspired by glass textures.
  • Designs that marry photography and graphic design are slowly beginning to show up, and because this is such an exciting and novel technique, every web designer will soon want to explore the endless possibilities.
  • Black and white websites are also set to become a big thing in web design in 2022, some of which will play with bold fonts whilst others are going to incorporate intricate linework.
  • Grid designs have become the norm, and that’s not going to change. More and more grid designs are now proudly asymmetric, though, in a fun way to express individuality.
  • One more? Here you go — 3D elements, some of which will prove to be highly-interactive, have been spotted in a few places. We suspect that this is going to be a big trend, too.

Your take home message if you’re looking for a guide to web design in 2022? All the old rules have gone out the window, and web designers will be having a ton of fun with all the latest techniques. As web design is turning into an art form, rather than a trade, no two professionally and creatively designed websites will be alike. Many of the websites that will be crafted this year could easily end up in a modern art museum in the future.

2022 Web Design Trends that Will Transform the UX

Although visual design can, by definition, be the only element of web design that allows visitors to form their first impressions so quickly, the UX side of web design is far from neglected in 2022. What should you think about if you’re aiming to create user friendly websites that aren’t just a pleasure to look at, but also a delight to use?

Here are the biggest UX trends of 2022!

Speedy Website Load Times

Did you know? Today’s netizens fully expect any web page they click on to load within two seconds. If it takes anywhere over three, they’ll be too impatient and frustrated to stick around, and they’ll head right back for the search engine results page unless they feel absolutely forced to be on a website.

Google has taken notice, too, and websites with speedy load times will have a clear SEO advantage when compared to the laggards. Fast loading isn’t just nice any more. It’s a must. Features such as Lazy Load will continue to help web designers ensure that websites load more quickly.

Come to the Dark Side!

From Firefox to Microsoft Edge, from Discord to YouTube, and from DuckDuckGo to Facebook, more and more of the most popular platforms have added a dark theme (also called dark mode) to their spectrum of possibilities.

Dark mode won’t be going anywhere in 2022, and that’s for three key reasons.

Countless people are choosing to use dark mode wherever it’s available because it is easier on the eye and healthier. Dark themes are essential for people with dyslexia, yes, but they are also better for the rest of us.

At the same time, perhaps because it’s become more popular recently, many users think dark mode is visually more appealing. The third reason behind its popularity? More and more people rely on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets to do most of their web browsing, and dark mode actually helps to conserve battery life.

Adding a dark mode option to your website is an easy way to make users happy — which is great for business.

Micro Sites

Internet users are distracted quickly, and when there’s more content on a site, there’s more to be distracted by. Micro websites are quickly becoming fashionable. They can range from very micro (one single impactful page with infinite scrolling) to around five pages long.

The one thing all micro sites have in common, besides their brevity? They have one focal point, or one call to action. They exist for one reason, and one reason only, whether that’s to promote a new product, advertise a single event, or to invite people to generously donate to one all-important cause.

This latest trend is great news for web designers, because micro sites allow them to experiment with all the exciting visual design elements we looked at earlier until they reach perfection. If it’s as short and to the point as a micro website has to be, after all, you want everything to be in tip-top shape.

Responsive Web Design

Responsive web design, which allows web designers to make ample use of HTML and CSS to make sure that their designs are automatically resized to perfectly fit any screen, is no longer a particularly trendy or cutting-edge choice. This 2022 web design guide isn’t just about the latest innovations, though, but also about best practice.

People browse the web on smartphones, tablets, all kinds of different laptops, and desktop PCs. That’s the reality in 2022. They have to be able to count on the same striking design, which perfectly conveys a brand’s unique vision, on every single one of those devices. That means that responsive web design is no longer optional in 2022.

Thumb-Friendly Mobile Navigation

What is new, though, is a trend towards something that’s been dubbed thumb-friendly mobile navigation. Most mobile users scroll through websites with their thumbs. Even if you never thought about it, just try it out for yourself. You know you do it too.

What makes the user experience 10 times better in a world dominated by mobile devices? Being able to reach everything that matters with the same thumb you use to scroll, of course! That’s why one of the best features for a mobile website design is to have all important elements within reach of this important finger.

Smart Videos

Gone are the days in which webmasters and content creators were able to engage users with a stock photo or a random YouTube video. Internet users’ appetite for videos is only increasing in 2022, but today, they demand well-designed, professionally-edited, and highly-relevant videos that match the visual design of the websites they’re on, where at all possible.

Videos will play an increasingly important role in eCommerce websites. We’ve all bought dresses or shirts that looked great in the (masterfully-Photoshopped) advertising images but that sadly turned out to be single-use, flimsy, pieces of fast fashion. We’ve all probably considered buying tools or furniture online, only to abandon our filled shopping baskets because we weren’t able to accurately assess their quality. Live-action videos will help to solve that problem as online shopping is no longer simply mainstream, but also the norm.

Smart videos will be similarly crucial in other contexts. Core value messages, announcements, fundraising… words aren’t sufficient in the modern world. We want to come face to face with the people we’re choosing to buy from or invest in.

Visual Data

Modern internet users don’t just want a nice story — they crave hard data to back up any claims or promises anyone makes. Marketers have long artfully employed statistics to convince and persuade, and prominently featuring hard data on websites continues to be an effective technique.

Why use simple bullet points to get the point across when people find it much easier to understand data that’s supported by visual clues, though? Some of the visual data we’ll continue to see on the web in 2022 will be a bit like weather forecasts, using maps (and taking advantage of users’ inherent sense of belonging to their geographical region) to encourage people to switch to green energy, donate to charity, or subscribe to a service. Others will be entirely more creative, in ways we’re yet to see.

Translating statistics and numbers into images will be a thrilling challenge for the web designers of 2022!

Other Things Web Designers Should Pay Attention to in 2022

We’ve just about covered all the most thrilling aspects of web design in 2022, but there’s more to look at. Web designers touch nearly everything that ultimately ends up online, and they can play proactive roles in the more administrative side of things, as well.

Legal Pages

The world wide web is no longer a modern version of the Wild West — a place where just about anyone can set up a website without consequences. Whether a website targets a particular locality (as in the case of local business websites, for instance) or seeks to reach the entire world, websites now absolutely have to be “legally compliant”. They also have to meet the conditions set by third-party services they collaborate with, such as AdSense or affiliate marketing programmes.

In 2022, that indeed means that every single professional website absolutely needs a thought-out Privacy Policy page, a Terms of Service page, a Copyright Notice page, and a page describing its Cookies Policy.

Wait, you say, isn’t that something businesses should delegate to their solicitors? Indeed, any established platform will seek legal advice before going live with the legal pages on their website. The days in which 99% of visitors would simply scroll to the bottom of that legalese and hit the “agree” button are gone, though. Modern netizens care more about their online safety and security than ever before, and also pay more attention to legal pages.

At the same time, they’re turned off by dry legal pages that lack the same creativity displayed elsewhere on the website. Web designers can play a key role in making legal pages more appealing and more “human”, then.

A More Gender-Neutral Web

The last couple of years have made social awareness go mainstream — and on the internet, that means that any hint of 1950s-style gender norms very much has to go right out the window. In 2022, websites don’t cater to men or women, or boys and girls. They’re for people. Content creators and marketing experts are widely adopting inclusive gender-neutral language, and web designers can play their part in this change.

If you’re a web designer, you might not get “cancelled” if you portray men as DIY-loving brutes while you try to appeal to women by using pastel tones and butterflies. Your client, on the other hand, probably will. That doesn’t reflect well on you, so don’t even think about it. You have plenty of innovative trends to pick from as you design the perfect websites, so stereotypes should be forgotten.

An Accessible Internet

Blue Whale Media believes that more web designers and businesses are starting to consider and incorporate accessibility features in their websites for 2022.

The rise of the dark mode is a great start, but you’ll also want to think about clear colour contrasts between text and background, and you’ll want to keep colour blind people in mind as you design your pages.

Visual indicators that draw attention to key elements are another feature of web design that can help people with visual challenges enjoy a website more easily, and of course, text-to-speech, subtitles, and transcripts of videos or podcasts are a must as well now. Functional alt tags for images catch two birds with one stone, as they increase accessibility while offering a nice SEO bonus.

Are You Ready for 2022?

Who looks for a guide to web design in 2022? You’ll either be a web designer yourself, or someone who needs an updated website for a business or brand. In both cases, you’ll want to stay ahead of the latest trends and follow established standards at the same time. The ultimate goal — to serve the end user. That’s more challenging than it once was, because people’s expectations have risen, but it’s also more creative. The best websites in 2022 won’t just exist to package the text more efficiently. They’ll be works of art in their own right.