The attention span of a goldfish is 9 seconds. Today, that of a human is 8 seconds (down from 12 seconds in 2000 and continuing to decline due to technology). That means that if you want your website visitors to stay, your website needs to load quickly. Site speed matters - a lot.


With over half of medium-sized businesses planning to upgrade to a faster, stronger and more relevant website it’s important to understand web trends and technologies for 2019. And it’s important to know the difference between a trend and a passing fad.

Web design trends in 2019 will continue to be about delivering an optimal user experience: prioritizing speed and mobile design; eye-catching simple designs with asymmetrical layouts; immersive video backgrounds, and more.

Speed

It takes about 50 milliseconds (that’s 0.05 seconds) for users to decide whether or not they like your site, and whether they’ll stay or leave. So you may have a beautiful site with lots of important content but if the site is data-heavy - no one is going to hang around long enough to appreciate it.

In July 2018, Google began prioritizing rankings for sites that load faster than others. Other search engines will likely follow suit.  

What this all means is that websites need to load faster, and speed needs to be designed into the site. The challenge is website developers will also have to incorporate photos and videos in a way that doesn’t slow down the site.

Flat Design

In 2018, 57% of website traffic came from mobile and tablet searches, and this number is ever-increasing. In response, website developers began creating a cleaner, simpler sites optimized for mobile performance.

These cleaner minimalist designs, or flat designs, load quickly and hold a high SEO value. This means your website will rank higher in search results and it is easier for your content to be discovered.

Flat design isn’t about being boring but rather about getting rid of clutter, utilizing bright colours, crisp edges, and a lot of white space. An experienced designer knows how to bring design, colour, imagery, fonts and other elements together to provide an excellent user experience and keep the site ‘light’ so it loads quickly.

Video Backgrounds

Videos are incredibly powerful. In spite of the quick-loading, flat design trend, the popularity of video will continue to increase in 2019 because they grab the visitor’s attention and have been proven to increase conversion (response to your call to action).
 
A few reasons why videos make sense:

  • Delivers messages more quickly and in a more engaging way. Gone are the days (and attention spans) of 500-word paragraphs.
  • Differentiates you from your competition and promotes your corporate personality. Is your company funny, innovative, responsive, serious,
  • Drives traffic to your site. Especially if you create a channel on YouTube to maximize the SEO benefit (because, yes, Google owns YouTube).
  • Allows for integration with social media. Sharing the video from your YouTube channel to your social media (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc) allows you share your message and encourage others to share it to.
  • Accessible anytime, anywhere. Customers can view (and share) your marketing .. at their own leisure.

There are a number of video options to determine which style and format best reflect your brand.

Micro-Animations

Micro-animations are brief animations that appear when the user hovers over or click on an image or text. Micro-animations are designed to direct users through tasks, and while they may seem somewhat frivolous, they have a significant psychological impact.

  • They improve website navigation by directing the user’s attention on what to do next.
  • They provide instant and relevant feedback about a completed action. An example is the Like Button on Facebook.
  • They make the user experience much more rewarding because it’s interactive and provides more control - like a menu appearing when the user clicks on the image of a hamburger.
  • With increasing usage of small screens and flat designs, it becomes a challenge to include all the required information.

Micro-animations are a powerful way to provide an intuitive and satisfying experience to your user as they browse your website.

Chatbots

A chatbot, short for chat robot, is a computer program that simulates human interaction. Basic examples are Google auto-suggests a word as you start typing in the search bar, or the way Facebook uses everything it has learned about you to stream relevant ads, events, and information.

  • Improving productivity and customer service. Chatbots improve productivity by handling inquiries from users - freeing up employee time spent gathering basic information. They make your company available to your customer 24/7 and can respond to an unlimited amount of users at once.
  • Engaging your visitors. Chatbots provide immediate feedback, answer basic questions and can even amuse people by giving them funny tips, they also help killing time when users have nothing to do.

Moving forward website chatbots are now considered de rigueur in the fast-changing world of digital marketing.

That’s Just the Tip of the Iceberg!

We’ve just covered a short list of current trends and technologies; there are many more and it’s likely some things will have changed by the time you read this! The trends we outlined in our 2018 Predictions blog (artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, voice search/digital assistants, 4G to 5G, and the Internet of Things technologies) continue to evolve.

2018 Digital Trends

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