Digital trends and users’ expectations change every day. Some UX trends become outdated and move beyond, but others gain ground. It means that designers need to follow the most recent trends to stick out from the crowd.

Customers visit tons of websites constantly which means that businesses need to somehow draw their attention and make them stay on their website. One of the ways to succeed is to build a visually appealing and intuitive web solution according to usability principles. Here comes the question of what trends to follow.

Let’s now explore the top 5 leading UX design trends of 2021 in detail and see how popular brands implement them successfully.

1. Dark mode

One of the web design UX design trends for 2021 is dark mode. Such brands as Instagram, Apple, Facebook, and Android offer alternative themes in their products. Here are the core reasons for the trend’s popularity:

  • It looks ultra-modern;
  • It allows highlighting and popping other design elements;
  • It saves device battery power;
  • It reduces eye strain in low-light conditions.

The dark mode feature is a popular UX trend for web development for both desktop and mobile devices. Also, many applications provide visitors with the ability to choose when to activate the dark mode.

For example, Apple users can schedule times to change their device appearance automatically. You can pick the “Sunset to Sunrise” option or set a certain time to perform the transition.

2. 3D Development

2D pictures and flat texts are a thing of the past. When we talk about UX design, it is important that users get an experience that is out of the ordinary. What started with the gaming world is now spreading its wings to mobile applications and even website development.

With the introduction of 3D effects and displace avatars, the UX can be made to be more engaging and informative. One effective example of such an experience is the 360-degree view. While it isn’t exactly a 3D view, it does give users the feeling of seeing things in real-time.

From using shadows below texts to give them a 3D appearance to using AR/VR technology to add 3D motion graphics in your UX design, the options are plenty.

3. Design For Speed

5G technology is on the brink of becoming mainstream. While a segment of users is opposing its widespread use due to environmental concerns, it is nevertheless shaping upcoming UX design trends.

With high-speed Internet, your application or website needs a UX that allows for fast load times. This can be a contradictory goal to achieve, given that an increase in your design elements also means a reduction in speed.

But, that’s where a careful judgment of audience temperament comes into play. Add only those elements that give absolute value to the end-user while not pulling down the load times. Free tools like GTmetrix can be used to ascertain page load times and the factors that are slowing your site.

4. Advanced Personalization

Personalization in design is an approach where a company or brand creates individual content and recommendations for each user based on provided information: date of birth, marital status, viewing and order history, etc. The main goal of personalized design is to make the user feel that the content is created especially for them and in this manner increase the conversion rate which is what all the commercial website owners strive for.

Personalization is as much a user experience trend as it is one of the best practices nowadays. Google and Apple continue to develop personalized assistants for their ecosystems that can now understand who is interacting with them by voice, face, or fingerprint. In the future, interfaces will become even more personalized and change their appearance, position of elements, tone, and behavior in general in a blink of an eye.

AI plays a big part in UX without the majority of users even realizing it. Think about the personalized music suggestions on Spotify. The suggested videos on Youtube or Netflix recommendations. Amazon creates a personalized homepage for each of its customers based on their shopping habits, wishlist, and shopping cart. You can make the interface more personal to the user by generating content that is relevant to them.

At the same time…

Personalization is not an easy UX design trends to follow. It’s not about letting a user switch between dark and light themes (which is more of customization). Website may collect and analyze data incorrectly resulting in bad outcomes. Call a user by the wrong name or suggest something that will offend them and you lose them forever.

Building a personalized website is expensive. You have to collect and analyze information, develop profiles and personal accounts, and ensure the work of algorithms to create individual interfaces. Many users find it intimidating that the site knows specific information about them, so the personalization also requires better security and improved UX writing to convince a user to provide their personal information, etc.

5. Super Tech Landing Pages

There is also a trend that involves especially complex work with layouts and animation. An abstract representation of products and processes is a perfect solution for the tech- and production-oriented websites that can’t afford to lose visitors who get bored. These tricks include hyper-realistic complex animations, renders, and volumetric illustrations that attract, amaze, and captivate.

The result may be of various degrees of “incredibleness”. Sometimes these are just detailed, stylish but rather neutral examples like this MacBook Pro landing page:

landing page design

Other examples can be breathtaking:

landing page ux design

At the same time…

The visuals are stunning. They truly are. And the level of engineering and design work put into creating these pages is apparent. The main challenge though is that at the best of times visitors get no more than 60% of the information you are trying to convey by a website.

With these websites, they get about 10%. To the point when this trend makes designers violate the very idea of accessible and clear delivery of information in the pursuit of pleasing you with jaw-dropping visuals. Find the golden mean where you can simultaneously astonish and bring value.

Thumbnail image by Freepik.

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